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This Week in Northern Luzon (November 21 to 27, 2020)

In Baguio, residents over 65 years old are required to stay at home until November 27.

By: Antonette Louise Guiao | November 21, 2020
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COVID-19, COVID-19 testing, Quarantine Updates, Health News, Baguio, contact tracing

As Baguio is included in the list of LGUs that are “high-risk” areas for COVID-19, the city continues to enforce protocols to keep its residents safe and protected from the risk of acquiring COVID-19 infection. This includes implementing stay-at-home measures to prevent senior citizens from going out and interacting with others who might be carriers of the virus. The province is also rolling out ways to provide contactless processes and services for everyone. In addition to these efforts, Baguio officials also appealed to the country’s testing czar to give their delivery riders free COVID-19 testing to help monitor their health.

Quarantine Updates

Baguio residents over 65 years old restricted from going out

Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong issued an executive order that implements a strict stay-at-home restriction for all people over the age of 65 years old starting November 17 to November 27, 2020. The said people will only be allowed to go outside for the following circumstances:

• purposes of work
• seeking medical attention
• when they have no other non high-risk relatives or acquaintances to assist them in acquiring basic needs

All non-work related social gatherings and activities for senior citizens are also suspended during the given period. The Office of the Senior Citizen Affairs shall be closed for activities and physical or walk-in transactions during this period. However, a skeletal workforce will be allowed to report for duty to address immediate concerns. [1]

Research group classifies 9 LGUs as “high risk areas” for COVID-19

OCTA Research has classified nine local government units in the country as “high risk areas” for COVID-19. Based on the research group’s monitoring report, the following LGUs were placed under this classification:

• Makati
• Baguio City
• La Trinidad, Benguet
• Itogon, Benguet
• Batangas City
• Lucena, Quezon
• Lopez, Quezon
• Davao City, Davao del Sur
• Pagadian, Zamboanga del Sur

These areas were considered high-risk based on the high cases per day, high positivity rate, high attack rate, and/or high hospital occupancy. The OCTA Research group added that the mentioned areas might experience a high hospital burden in the weeks to come that may overwhelm their medical frontliners and stress their health system. As such, they urged the LGUs to intensify their testing, contact tracing, and isolation efforts to slow down the increase and transmission of the virus in their communities. Implementation of aggressive and effective localized lockdowns are also needed to help control the transmissions. [2]

Health News

Government workers in Baguio required to register in BIMP App

Mayor Benjamin Magalong has urged all city hall officials to register in the Baguio In My Pocket or BIMP program, a system that allows contactless transactions, among other benefits. BIMP is a smart phone application and web portal developed to help the city digitize its governance. The mobile app can also aid the city in achieving a “SMART City” status where all problems can be addressed and solved with the aid of technology, including bringing basic services to the public. While the registration in the application is voluntary, Magalong said that those working in the government must lead by example and register so the citizens will be encouraged to follow.

The said application will also help Baguio with its intensified contact tracing process. Information Technology Business Solutions Operations Manager MJ Barin added that only basic information is needed and proper measures have been put in place to make sure all data is secured. [3]

City officials in Baguio propose free COVID-19 testing for delivery riders

The city officials of Baguio have requested for Vivencio Dizon, the country’s testing czar, to partner with food delivery companies in the province for optional free COVID-19 testing for all their drivers and delivery riders. The city’s legislators stated that delivery riders and drivers are at risk of getting COVID-19 on account of their job and this may jeopardize not only themselves but also the people whom they interact with. Therefore, free testing services and other benefits must be given to them regardless of what company they’re under. Officials have been advocating for aggressive expanded and targeted testing among various sectors of the community in order to immediately isolate those who test positive for the virus. [4 & 5 ]

Go to Yoorekka for more COVID-19 updates in Northern Luzon.

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About Antonette Louise Guiao
Antonette is a writer, a night owl, an extrovert, and a BTS ARMY. Her spare time is consumed by drawing digital vector art, sleeping, binge-watching Netflix series, and learning how to cook. An adventurer by heart, she aspires to travel the world with her family, try extreme outdoor activities, and taste all sorts of food in different countries.
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Disclaimer: All articles in the Consumers Magazine of Yoorekka are for general information and entertainment purposes only. Although careful research has been made in writing them, Yoorekka does not make any warranty about the completeness and accuracy of all information presented in our articles. Our content is not intended to be used in place of legal, medical, or any professional advice.
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