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Omicron in Philippines a 'Matter of When', Face Shields Add Protection: Duque

Authorities must move while cases are low.
by The reportr team
4 days ago
Photo/s: Jerome Ascaño

The arrival of the Omicron variant in the Philippines is "a matter of when", Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said Monday, as he pushed for face shields as extra protection.

Earlier in the day, the Philippines again banned the entry of fully vaccinated foreign tourists after closing borders to countries that have confirmed cases of the new variant of concern.

"It's not a matter of if, it's a matter of when," Duque said, when asked by the President if Omicron had a chance of entering the country.

Duque said he was for the wearing of face shields, which add an extra layer of protection. On Nov. 16, authorities made the uncomfortable plastic gear voluntary instead of mandatory in areas under Alert Level 3 or lower.

President Rodrigo Duterte ordered the Inter-Agency Task Force on COVID-19 response to decide on whether there is a need to make mandatory again the wearing of face shields, saying it is an additional layer of protection.

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"Whether we like it or not, itong Omicron na 'to dadating talaga," Duterte said.

Duterte also asked the IATF to review the country's existing COVID-19 protocols to see if there is a need to revive stricter measures. As of Monday, the Philippines has yet to report any case of the Omicron variant that was first reported in South Africa.


Metro Manila Stays Under Alert Level 2 as World Watches Omicron Variant 

Face Shields are 'Encouraged' Says Palace as World Moves vs Omicron

Omicron Update: Philippines Expands Arrivals Ban to Europe

Omicron Has More Mutations Than Delta Variant: Study

Continue reading below ↓
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