THE Department of Health is preparing for a possible increase in COVID-19 cases as restrictions in public transport are being relaxed, particularly on the number of passengers allowed.
Health Undersecretary Rosario Vergeire made the remark in response to the Oct. 26 findings of the OCTA Research Group indicating that the easing of social distancing measures in public transport could in the next two weeks trigger an increase in new COVID-19 cases in the National Capital Region—the epicenter of coronavirus infection.
“Sa pag-ease ng restrictions sa public transport, pagbubukas ng ekonomiya at iba pang sektor…we expect…kasama sa risk management ang pagtaas ng kaso. We have been saying that the virus will stay here for long but at the same time, we cannot remain in lockdown forever and paralyzed with fear,” she said.
Vergeire pointed out that easing restrictions should go along with being vigilant and strict observance of minimum health standards such as washing of hands, social distancing as well as wearing of face masks or face shields.
“There should be a change in behavior so that COVID-19 infection will not be as transmissible as it was before, at para maiwasan ang pagtaas ng kaso,” she added.
The Philippines has recorded 373,144 COVID-19 cases so far.