HomeNewsGovernment lifts most COVID-19 restrictions in Metro Manila

Government lifts most COVID-19 restrictions in Metro Manila

On Sunday, the health department listed 1,038 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the country’s total to 3,661,049

The Philippine government will lift most COVID-19 restrictions in the capital Manila starting Tuesday, March 1, after a sharp drop in infections and a rising number of people vaccinated.

It comes weeks after the country reopened its borders to foreign tourists for the first time in two years and as campaigning for the May 9 national elections cranks up.

Businesses, government agencies and public transport will be allowed to operate at full capacity when the metropolis of 13 million people is placed on the lowest alert level on March 1.

Masks will still have to be worn in public, but will no longer be required during sport or exercise under the new rules, which also apply to another 38 areas of the country.

Temperature checks for entering establishments will not be necessary and contact tracing efforts all but scrapped.

Cases have averaged 1,421 in the past week, compared with a peak of 39,004 on January 15 when the highly contagious Omicron strain ripped through the country.

On Sunday, the health department listed 1,038 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the country’s total to 3,661,049.

- Newsletter -

The positivity rate was at five percent, which was the lowest so far this year, and the lowest since December 27 last year.

The Department of Health also reported 1,999 new recoveries, pushing the total number of Filipinos who recovered from the disease to 3,551,687.

Health groups, however, cautioned that it is still unclear whether the COVID-19 situation in the Philippines is already entering into an endemic stage.

Worldwide, the novel coronavirus has caused more than 434 million infections and over 5.9 million deaths since it was first reported in Wuhan, China in late 2019 according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center citing official reports.

The United States remains the most badly affected country with over 78.9 million infections and over 948,000 deaths.

Taking into account excess mortality linked to COVID-19, the World Health Organization has estimated that the overall death toll could be two to three times higher.

After lengthy lockdowns which devastated the economy and threw millions out of work, the relaxation will help ease the financial misery for many Filipinos.

The vaccination rate in Manila has reached “100 percent,” a government official said recently, but the rate is much lower in other parts of the country. – with a report from AFP

© Copyright LiCAS.news. All rights reserved. Republication of this article without express permission from LiCAS.news is strictly prohibited. For republication rights, please contact us at: [email protected]

Support LiCAS.news

We work tirelessly each day to tell the stories of those living on the fringe of society in Asia and how the Church in all its forms - be it lay, religious or priests - carries out its mission to support those in need, the neglected and the voiceless.
We need your help to continue our work each day. Make a difference and donate today.