Duterte Says Philippines' COVID Response Needs Recalibration

As country nears 2 million cases.
Photo/s: Eloisa Lopez, Reuters

President Rodrigo Duterte said Monday the Philippines needed to recalibrate its COVID-19 pandemic response as the country reported yet another record-high increase in daily infections.

During a meeting of the Inter-Agency Task Force late Monday night that was taped and aired Tuesday morning, Duterte ordered top Cabinet officials to study whether street-wide lockdowns would be better than large-scale ones.

"Whether the rise in the number of cases is due to the Delta variant or not, we need to recalibrate our response," the President said.

Duterte also reminded Filipinos to practice minimum health standards and to get vaccinated once it's their turn.

"Alam niyo wala tayong ibang panlaban sa COVID kundi ang bakuna," he said.


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The Philippines on Monday recorded 22,366 new COVID-19 cases, the biggest single day jump, which brought the cumulative tally since the pandemic began close to 2 million.

Interior Sec. Eduardo Año last week said the government could soon replace regional or province-wide lockdowns with street-level restrictions. But until President Duterte approves the new policy, the current community quarantine classification system will continue to take effect. Metro Manila is under MECQ until Sept. 7.

The government has been on the receiving end for its pandemic response strategy as President Duterte appointed retired generals to lead the COVID-19 response task force.

The country's vaccine czar is also a retired general -- Sec. Carlito Galvez Jr. who advises Duterte on the peace process in Mindanao.


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