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Sunday, September 12, 2021

Metro Manila Will Be One Big Granule Under New Community Quarantine System


Update: Here is the finalized Alert Level system guidelines (9/14).

The National Capital Region will be placed under a common alert level under the government’s new COVID-19 community quarantine classification system.

Stop if you’ve heard this before, but despite the localized or “granular” lockdown designed to spur the economy while also curbing the spread of the coronavirus, Metro Manila will, as a whole, be designated as one big granule. Yeah, so instead of the four-tier ECQ, MECQ, GCQ, and MECQ system, the government will have just two prevailing community quarantine levels—ECQ and GCQ. Within GCQ though, there will be four alert levels.

Ahead of its implementation starting September 16, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) confirmed that the entirety of Metro Manila will be placed under a common alert level.

Metro Manila mayors agreed that there should only be one common alert level to prevent the general public from gathering in an area with a lower alert level.

That said, the DILG confirmed that mayors can separately institute localized lockdowns in particular villages, buildings, or streets based on criteria such as the area’s average daily attack rate or the number of COVID-19 cases per 100 population, the two-week growth rate of its virus infections, healthcare utilization rate, and the increase or decline of every day cases.

The IATF will finalize the proposed policy by tomorrow, but for now, this is how the proposed system looks like:

Alert Level 1
  • Movement of persons shall be allowed except for reasonable restrictions identified by LGUs.
  • Private establishments will be allowed to operate at full capacity subject to Minimum Public Health Standards (MPHS).
  • Government agencies will operate at full capacity subject to MPHS.
  • Closed/indoor, Crowded, Close Contact activities (3Cs) are allowed provided for MPHS and Safety Seal.
Alert Level 2
  • Movement of persons shall be allowed except for reasonable restrictions based on age/comorbidities determined by LGUs
  • Private establishments will be operating on a minimal on-site capacity.
  • Government agencies will operate at 50 percent on-site capacity.
  • 50 percent for Closed, Crowded, Close Contact activities (+10 percent if with Safety Seal)
Alert Level 3
  • Movement of persons shall be allowed except for reasonable restrictions based on age/comorbidities determined by LGUs.
  • Private establishments will be operating on a minimal on-site capacity.
  • Government agencies will operate at 30 percent on-site capacity.
  • 30 percent for Closed, Crowded, Close Contact activities (+10 percent if with Safety Seal).
Alert Level 4
  • 18-65 years old, or with comorbidities/immunodeficiency, or pregnant are not allowed to go out
  • Private establishments will be operating on a minimal on-site capacity.
  • Government agencies will operate at 20 percent on-site capacity.
  • Closed, Crowded, Close Contact activities not allowed.
The Philippines on Saturday posted a single-day high of 26,303 infections, bringing its total to 2,206,021 of which 185,706 were active. The Delta variant of the virus is now the predominant strain, making up 76 percent of total samples while 15 percent are made up of Alpha and Beta variants.

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