Press Release

IATF recommends current ECQ to stay in NCR, Region III, Region IV-A, and other high-risk areas

The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) on Thursday, April 23, recommended to maintain the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in the National Capital Region, Region III, Region IV-A and all other high-risk areas up to May 15.

Provinces considered high-risk in Region III include Bataan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Tarlac, Zambales, and Pampanga.  High-risk provinces in Region IV-A are Batangas, Cavite, Laguna, Rizal and Quezon.  Oriental Mindoro and Occidental Mindoro comprise high-risk provinces in Region IV-B while Albay and Catanduanes are the high-risk provinces in Region V.  Benguet in CAR, Pangasinan in Region I.

In the Visayas, the IATF considered the island of Panay (Antique, Iloilo, Aklan and Capiz), Cebu province and Cebu City subject to ECQ, subject to further evaluation.  In Mindanao, Davao del Norte and Davao City are considered high-risk, while Davao de Oro (formerly Compostela Valley) is subject to ECQ and subject to recheck.

High-risk areas will be under ECQ until May 15, subject to further evaluation. Moderate-risk areas meanwhile will be under general community quarantine starting May 1, also subject to further evaluation.  Low-risk areas will fall under general community quarantine starting May 1, and if there is no deterioration, GCQ will be relaxed leading to normalization starting May 16.

The IATF likewise recommended a set of minimum health standards to be implemented starting April 27.  The Department of Health, the Department of Transportation, the Department of Trade and Industry, the Department of Labor and Employment, and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) will prepare the guidelines by April 25.

LGUs previously under ECQ but remain under GCQ starting May 1 will allow workers to go out and work in phases.    Young people, senior citizens and those with high health risk would have to stay at home.

For GCQ areas, restricted mall opening covering non-leisure shops would be allowed.  There will be mandatory temperature check, mandatory wearing of masks, and mandatory alcohol use.  Limited number of people, particularly those with age 21 to 59, with ID and not looking sickly, would be allowed to go inside.

Priority and essential construction projects would likewise be allowed to resume, subject to minimum health standards, physical distancing, and provision of barracks or accommodation for workers.  Public transport modes would likewise be allowed to operate at reduced capacity.  Local government units (LGUs) would enforce curfew at night for non-workers.

The decision on ECQ and GCQ were based on the risk of outbreak.    Areas under ECQ would again undergo evaluation if the decision can be relaxed starting May 16, 2020.    ### OPS