OCTA Research sees need for NCR to remain under GCQ

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March 22 2021 Cavite police guard the boundary of Cavite--Manila along coastal road on the first day of a GCQ bubble, in an attempt to contain Covid19 cases within the NCR and stop it from spreading to nearby provinces. INQUIRER/ MARIANNE BERMUDEZ

The OCTA Research group on Tuesday recommended extending the general community quarantine (GCQ) status in the National Capital Region (NCR) for the rest of July to stop the potential spread of the Delta variant of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

In a Laging Handa briefing, OCTA Research Team fellow, Dr. Ranjit Rye, said Metro Manila is “not yet ready” to loosen lockdown restrictions to the least stringent modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) despite its situation improving significantly.

“So, in the NCR, I think we should continue with the GCQ… Although the situation is currently good in NCR, this should be sustained as we increase our vaccination rates,” Rye said partly in Filipino.

Rye, however, noted that the current business restrictions for Covid-19 could be relaxed to allow them to operate at a higher capacity.

Rye said the government should strengthen its monitoring and enforcement of minimum public health standards in order to shift to a less stringent quarantine classification.

“So for me, I think we are not yet ready for MGCQ. That is definite. We do not qualify eh even based on government’s criteria for MGCQ, we won’t qualify as of now,” Rye said partly in Filipino.

The OCTA Monitoring Report as of July 13 showed that the NCR had an average of 634 new Covid-19 cases per day for the period of July 6 to 12.

This was 2 percent lower than the previous week’s daily average of 646.

The OCTA report noted that the weekly growth rate has averaged -3 percent over the past three weeks, indicating that the trend is nearly level or flat.

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