A general community quarantine in the Metro Manila area of the Philippine capital (pictured) has been extended to July 31 as a countermeasure against Covid-19, said on Wednesday presidential spokesman Harry Roque. He warned that stricter quarantine rules could return to Metro Manila if the number of Covid-19 infections in the area continued to rise.
The general community quarantine was due to have expired at the end of the day on Wednesday (July 15).
Operations of casino resorts in Manila are to remain suspended during the extended period, an industry source told GGRAsia. Casino complexes in the Metro Manila area, including the large-scale private sector sites of City of Dreams Manila, Okada Manila, Resorts World Manila and Solaire Resort and Casino, have been closed since mid-March.
The decision announced on Wednesday comes after President Rodrigo Duterte approved the recommendation of the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases to place Metro Manila under general quarantine measures for two more weeks starting Thursday (July 16), as the number of Covid-19 infections in the region continues to rise.
There were suggestions from members of the task force to introduce stricter quarantine rules in the capital region from Thursday, but President Duterte decided just to extend the existing measures after assurances that mayors of cities in the Metro Manila area would step up tracing, testing and treatment of people positive for the coronavirus.
Also from Thursday, the lockdown in Cebu City in Southern Philippines was eased from a so-called enhanced quarantine (the highest level of quarantine in the country) to a modified enhanced community quarantine, according to the presidential spokesman.
Prior to Wednesday’s announcements, most of the Philippines was placed under what is termed a modified general quarantine, the most relaxed phase of such measures. But some areas of the country returned to the general community quarantine rule due to rising numbers locally of Covid-19 infections.
Information carried on the website of the Philippine Department of Health indicated that the aggregate number of Covid-19 cases in the nation reached 58,850 as of Wednesday. A total of 1,392 new cases had been reported as of that day.
The website further stated that 36,260 cases remained active, and a total of 1,614 people had died.
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