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As we enter GCQ day 1, COVID-19 count reaches 18,086

Jun. 1 marks the first day of the National Capital Region entering General Community Quarantine (GCQ). We’re saying goodbye to quarantine passes, while others go back to their nine-to-five shifts with limited public transportation. As Inquirer puts it—commuters have a manic Monday ahead of them.

But as NCR eases into GCQ, coronavirus cases rose to 18,086 with confirmed 862 cases last May 31. 

“Of the 862 confirmed cases, the DOH said 16 were classified as ‘fresh cases’ or test results that were released to the patient within the last three days,” reports Inquirer. “while 846 were late cases or test results that were released to the patient within the last four days or more.”

DOH’s recent report drew flak from lawmakers and a local official due to their usage of terminologies, such as “fresh” and “late” cases. Sorsogon Gov. Francis “Chiz” Escudero calls out DOH’s usage of these terms as ego-saving tactics. Other officials who spoke up against the report were Sen. Francis Pangilinan, Sen. Panfilo Lacson, Sen. Risa Hontiveros and Vice President Leni Robredo.

“The growing public sentiment amidst the conflicting and confusing public pronouncements is that our citizens have been left to fend for themselves,” says Sen. Francis Pangilinan to Inquirer. Sen. Lacson tweeted his sentiments, saying how there’s no way around the real situation of the pandemic in this country. “Now that the backlogs are being corrected, expect things to get ugly before they get better,” Lacson tweeted. “One thing is certain: They were not completely honest in their daily situation report before.”

Concerning GCQ, Sen. Hontiveros points out that this may expose workers to a new wave of transmission. She also said the work-from-home arrangements, mass testing, procurement of safety equipment for front-line workers in hospitals and improved coordination with local governments should be pursued as NCR enters GCQ. 

As for Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian, he emphasized how it’s the public’s responsibility to observe guidelines to avoid a second wave of infection. “Let’s be realistic. The intended testing capacities will not happen as scheduled,” says Gatchalian. “The responsibility rests on us.”

Read more:
How are we doing? This COVID-19 data tracker provides real-time updates
To no one’s surprise, our depression is on the rise during quarantine
The gov’t says it isn’t doing mass testing, but “expanded target testing”

Art by Rogin Losa

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