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ECCP@Work Featured News Articles | March 23, 2021

March 23, 2021

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ECCP at Work

EXPLAINER: What you need to know about the NCR Plus bubble

Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal are placed under a stricter general community quarantine to control the surge in coronavirus cases in the country. Here’s a breakdown of all the things you should know about the two-week GCQ bubble that is in place from March 22 to April 4.

Unused vaccines in the province to be redirected to areas with high COVID-19 cases

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said provincial hospitals have until March 24 to inoculate their healthcare workers before their supplies are recalled and given to medical frontliners in areas with high COVID-19 transmission, such as Metro Manila.

UK, South African variant cases present in all Metro Manila cities: DOH

The Department of Health confirmed that more transmissible COVID-19 variants have already been detected in all Metro Manila cities but it would be up to the World Health Organization to declare whether there is already community transmission of variants in the Philippines. Both the UK (B.1.1.7) and the South African (B.1.351) variants are believed to make the COVID-19 virus more transmissible.

COVID-19 timeout: DOT okays staycations as Metro Manila, nearby areas form bubble

Tourists from Metro Manila and the 4 nearby provinces within its bubble may rebook without fees their planned vacations for the Holy Week, the Department of Tourism said Monday. Staycation with age restrictions is also allowed within the capital region, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal, said Tourism Secretary Bernadette-Romulo Puyat.

External debt highest since 2012

Preliminary data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) released on Saturday showed external debt stood at $98.488 billion as of end-2020, up 17.8% from the $83.618 billion as of end-2019, and up 7.1% from the $92 billion as of end-September. This is also the highest since at least 2012, based on available central bank data.

Virus surge poses threat to Philippine economic recovery

Malacañang on Sunday announced tighter restrictions in the National Capital Region and the provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal until April 4. New COVID-19 cases stood at 7,757 on Sunday, bringing the total number of active cases to 73,072. Economic managers in recent weeks have pushed to reopen the economy in order to drive recovery and restore jobs. However, this was rejected by President Rodrigo R. Duterte, as the mass vaccination program has yet to pick up pace.

All private companies can procure vaccines, Malacañang clarifies

All private business enterprises can now purchase their own COVID-19 vaccines, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque announced on Monday. During his regular virtual briefing, the spokesman confirmed the provision restricting tobacco firms, milk manufacturers and other industries in conflict with public health in the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) of Republic Act 11525, the COVID-19 Vaccination Law, has already been removed.

More lawmakers slam ‘draft order’ barring private firms from buying COVID-19 vaccines

More lawmakers from the Senate and the House of Representatives on Sunday slammed a supposed draft administrative order prohibiting private companies, especially those selling "sin products," from importing COVID-19 vaccines for their employees. According to the supposed draft order, the Department of Health and the National Task Force Against COVID-19 (NTF) will review all requests of private entities to procure vaccines “to ensure that private entities who will be part of the agreement are not in any way related to the tobacco industry, products covered under EO 51 series of 1986”

Third Generation Covid-19 Variant Described In The Philippines

A new SARS-CoV-2 variant has emerged once again, this time in the Philippines. The new variant bears a resemblance to the recently discovered Japanese variant (B.1.1.248) and the infamous Brazilian variant (P.1), known for its dangerous immune-escape capabilities. 

Govt to explore proposal prioritizing NCR in COVID-19 vaccine drive

The government will study the proposal seeking to prioritize Metro Manila residents in the COVID-19 vaccination program as the region remains the virus epicenter, according to Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque. The suggestion was first floated by OCTA Research Fellow Dr. Guido David, stressing that the National Capital Region affects the situation nationwide.


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