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This Week in Central Luzon (September 26 to October 2, 2020)

As Subic reopens for tourism, safety protocols are implemented.

By: Antonette Louise Guiao | September 26, 2020
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Central Luzon, COVID-19, Quarantine Updates, MGCQ, safety protocols, new normal, Transportation News, Health News, Manila Bay

The province of Subic, Zambales is slowly opening its doors to tourism once more, and Clark has launched a special bike day to help its residents enjoy the outdoors while observing health measures. Meanwhile as the nation’s capital saw residents flocking to Manila Bay to see its transformation—violating social distancing rules in the process—COVID-19 free places may soon be placed under the “new normal.” Read on to get this week’s news roundup on Central Luzon.

Quarantine Updates

Subic reopened tourist spots for guests coming from MGCQ areas

Main attractions in Subic, Zambales have reopened their doors to tourists from areas under modified general community quarantine. Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority Chairman Wilma Eisma said that guests must still strictly follow safety protocols including wearing face masks and face shields and physical distancing. Those who wish to visit beach resorts must answer contact tracing forms or health forms before entry. Moreover, resorts will only accommodate 130 guests out of a total of 800 to avoid overcrowding. [1]

Malacanang announced plans of putting COVID-19-free areas under the “new normal”

Last September 21, Malacanang said that areas with zero COVID-19 transmissions may be placed under the “new normal” status starting October. Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said that he proposed the idea to the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Infectious Diseases and the body itself agreed. Roque mentioned that they are still “data-driven” and “guided by science” when asked about the possible quarantine measures after September 30.

As per the IATF, the “new normal” refers to the “emerging behaviors, situations, and public health standards that will be institutionalized in common or routine practices and remain even after the pandemic while the disease is not totally eradicated through means such as widespread immunization.” Manila, Bulacan, Batangas, and Tacloban are currently under general community quarantine. Bacolod, Lanao del Sur, and Iligan City are under modified enhanced community quarantine, and the rest of the country is under modified general community quarantine. [2]

Transportation News

Clark launches Clark Bike Day

The province of Clark launched a special day for all bikers in the place. Clark Bike Day will be held every Saturday and Sunday, from 5:00 AM to 10:00 AM and 3:30 PM to 6:00 PM. A special lane will be open every weekend exclusively for the bikers to use. The Bike Day route will be held along Prince Balagtas Road’s “Pader or Wall”. Clark implemented strict safety protocols for Bike Day [3]:

• QR Codes for contact tracing purposes will be posted. All rides must give their details.
• Clark traffic rules must strictly be obeyed, especially in road crossings.
• Always wear your face mask/covering, except for when you feel like it is keeping you from breathing freely.
• Maintain a safe distance of 2 meters from other riders.
• Always ride on the bike lane’s right side. Single file riding is a must.
• Remember to announce your intention when overtaking another rider.
• Racing within the bike lane is strictly prohibited, unless permitted by the CDC Management.
• When stopping for a rest or for an emergency, move completely off the bike lane.
• Only 3 members of a riding group shall be allowed to participate.
• Practice social distancing when getting off your bike.
• Always keep your hands sanitized.
• Bring essential tools for mechanical purposes.
• Strictly no littering.

Health News

DOH asked Malacanang to regulate swab test prices

The Department of Health said that it is currently asking the Malacanang Palace to regulate the price of COVID-19 tests, especially swab tests. They have already submitted an Executive Order issuance to the Office of the President, for the pricing of the tests differ in each laboratory in the country. Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire noticed the varying prices, which then led to an EO issuance that proposes a price ceiling for the tests. There is already an existing law on setting a price ceiling for medicines, but it does not include diagnostic tests and professional fees. She said that the DOH is waiting for the office’s response on whether or not the proposal will be approved. [4 & 5]

Go to Yoorekka for more COVID-19 updates in Central 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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