Cebu City to prioritize typhoon rehabilitation over COVID threat
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Cebu City will prioritize typhoon rehabilitation over the threat of the Omicron variant.
This was the pronouncement of Mayor Michael Rama following his meeting with officials of the Cebu Provincial government, Mandaue City, and Lapu-Lapu City, on the evening of January 6, 2022.
“Ang Omicron, ato gihapon nang atubangon, pero ang recovery mao usa atong focusan. Magsige tag estorya aning Omicron, lahi na unya atong pagatubangon, makalimtan na nuon ang recovery,” said Rama.
(Omicron, we will still address it, but the recovery now will be our main focus. If we will continue to talk about Omicron, then we will be addressing this concern and then we will then forget the recovery.)
The mayor said that while the city would intensify the implementation of public health standards to avoid the risk of a COVID-19 surge, the city had to rehabilitate the damage caused by Typhoon Odette so that people could be lifted out of suffering.
“Dili gihapon na nato kalimtan ang Omicron, apil na sa atong buhaton. Ang mga buhatunon nato kaning mga TTMFs (Temporary Transfer and Monitoring Facilities),” he said.
(We will still not forget Omicron, that is included in what we will do. What we will do is this TTMFs (Temporary Transfer and Monitoring Facilities).
Rama said that the Tricities and Cebu Province would have a uniform policy for COVID-19 because it was necessary that the policies were the same across borders.
As for the border control, even if Lapu-Lapu City will be placed in Alert Level 3, there will be no border control for residents going to and from the city.
“We should always serve as One Cebu island. Ang focus nato is recovery pero dili pud kalimtan ang COVID. Di ta kinahanglan magborder restriction,” said Rama.
(We should always serve as One Cebu island. Our focus is recovery but we will not forget COVID. We need not implement border restriction.)
Cebu City’s COVID-19 cases are seeing another rising trend in the past five days. The active cases have reached 134 as of January 7, 2022, with 56 new cases recorded on January 6.
According to the Emergency Operations Center (EOC), the daily positivity rate has risen to 8.85 percent after 56 out of 633 tested individuals.
“As usual, we are preparing isolation facilities (BIC and TTMF), we have 2 operational and we are preparing 3 more, a total capacity of at least 500 beds. In so far as TTMF, we have 4 operational. There is problem with voltage shortage and VECO is now on top of it,” he said.
“Sa hospitalization, our records are not up to date since our system bogged down, but we approximately have around 8.8 percent COVID patients in private hospitals and almost 60 percent for our public hospitals,” said Councilor Joel Garganera, the deputy chief implementor of the EOC.
As per EOC record, only 9 hospitalized patients out of 82 COVID-19 patients, which is around 10 percent, and mostly the patients are in their mid 20s except for one 85 year old patient.
Garganera is not very concerned with this rising trend in cases as it may be spillover from the holidays and the unavoidable crowding after the typhoon.
Still, he urged the public to be vigilant and practice the basic health protocols to avoid contracting the COVID-19.
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