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Experts suggest Hard GCQ or Soft MECQ after COVID-19 Philippines latest data recorded the highest number of cases.

COVID-19 PHILIPPINES – The country has just recorded the highest number of cases one year after and experts suggested Hard GCQ or Soft MECQ to contain the surge.

On Friday, the Philippines recorded 7,103 new COVID-19 cases which is the highest daily record since the pandemic began over a year ago which raised the country’s total number of infections to 648,066. With this, Prof. Ranjit Rye of the OCTA Group, a group of experts that monitors the COVID-19 situation in the country, said during a virtual forum, “The status quo is not enough. We need more mobility restrictions.” 

COVID-19 Philippines
Photo lifted from RAPPLER

He added that despite strictly following the minimum health standards, such an alone approach is not enough to contain the spread of the virus resulting in a surge of cases. They proposed for the government to declare ‘“hard general community quarantine” (hard GCQ) or a “soft modified enhanced community quarantine” (MECQ) so as “to have the impact of reducing the reproduction rate”.

What does the hard GCQ and soft MECQ means?

HARD GCQSOFT MECQ
Government offices and industries will continue operating but a significant percentage of the workforce will be working from home or staggered working hours. Operations in government offices including MSMEs will still continue but a significant percentage of the workforce of offices and industries in the government would have to work from home or staggered working hours.
Social gatherings and enclosed activities like indoor dining are discouraged.Operations in malls, groceries, and other essential establishments will continue but at a limited capacity. All social gatherings are prohibited.
Quarantine passes will only be for the workforce. And mass transportation must be provided for all workers. Mass transportation will still continue for the workers.

In a report from Inquirer, Rye said that if hard GCQ won’t be effective, the soft MECQ can instead be implemented. He added that even though localized lockdowns are implemented in some areas in the country that has a high number of cases, it is still not enough to curb the transmissions.

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