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Cimatu challenges Cebuanos: “End quarantine”

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ECQ – End Cebu’s Quarantine.

This was Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu’s challenged to Cebu City residents after the city was placed under enhanced community quarantine for the third time.

Cimatu is assigned to oversee the government’s response to the coronavirus (Covid-19) situation in the city, particularly the implementation of ECQ protocols.

“We have to end your quarantine already and I’m making this a message to all the Cebuanos. You help us end Cebu’s quarantine,” he said during a virtual presser in Cebu Wednesday. (https://bit.ly/2VAhGGg)

The good news, according to him, is that behavior and attitude of locals have changed in the few days that the national government decided to augment local efforts in implementing the ECQ.

“We notice that compliance of Cebuanos have changed in the second week. If you are there, you will see that the lockdown is very strict and, unlike before, people are complying. That’s the first. Secondly, they are also complying with minimum health standards,” said Cimatu.

Around 2,000 additional police personnel from other police offices were deployed to Cebu City to help enforce the ECQ strictly. The Armed Forces of the Philippines also sent a medical team.

The secretary also urged the barangays, Cebu City Health Department, and the Department of Health – 7 to reconcile their data to avoid conflict, as well as to have a clearer picture of the situation for better responses moving forward, particularly in contact tracing, isolation, and treatment of patients.

Cimatu is bent on looking for other areas where asymptomatic patients can be housed because the schools, which are converted into barangay isolation centers temporarily, are located right in the middle of the barangay, at close proximity to residents.

He is also looking at the possibility of increasing the bed capacity of the NOAH Complex at the South Road Properties.

To decongest hospitals, some hotels are also being considered as recovery areas for those who are already recovering from Covid-19 but do not want to go home just yet.