Fully vaccinated travelers can now enter Cebu City without need for COVID-19 tests
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Fully vaccinated travelers can now enter Cebu City ports without the need for a real-time polymerase reaction (RT-PCR), antigen, or saliva test.
The new Directive No. 10-25-1 signed by Acting Mayor Michael Rama states that fully vaccinated individuals must now only present a valid identification card (ID) and their vaccination card with a quick response code to be able to enter.
Previously, COVID-19 test results were needed to enter the city.
Acting Mayor Michael Rama said that the direction of the city has always been to incentivize the vaccinated individuals and finally lifting the travel restrictions at least for them is another step towards that direction.
Meanwhile, councilor Joel Garganera, the deputy chief implementor of the Emergency Operations Center (EOC), said the city understands that not all local government units (LGUs) release vaccine cards with the QR codes.
For these instances, the individual must present his or her vaccination certificate from the Department of Health (DOH), which can be accessed through the Vaxcert website for free.
“So kung walay QR code, we will also accept the vaccine certificate. If na vaccinate gikan sa PBB (Project Balik Buhay), naa may indication nga PBB gikan,” said Garganera.
For the partially vaccinated and non vaccinated individuals, they must present any one of the following: a negative RT-PCR test taken within 72 hours of departure, a negative antigen test taken within 48 hours of departure, or a negative saliva test taken within 48 hours of departure.
Exemptions for the testing requirement is applicable for truck drivers and at least one assistant per truck, who are delivering essential goods to the City from other ports at least five times a week, provided that they take an RT-PCR test once a month
As for the possibility that individuals will try to use fake vaccination cards, Garganera said they trust the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) to prevent this from happening.
He warned that those who will falsify vaccination cards will be charged.
It is not yet clear if children who will be traveling with fully vaccinated adults will need an RT-PCR tests upon traveling as this was not stated in the directive.
For now, parents are encouraged to have their children tested prior to departure even if the parents themselves are fully vaccinated.
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