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DTI chief worries NCR reverting back to Alert Level 2

MANILA – Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez doubts that the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases will revert Metro Manila to Alert Level 2 amid the increasing coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) cases in the National Capital Region (NCR) (NCR).

Lopez told reporters in a Viber message the country needed to “sustain economic recovery”.

This, as the utilization rate of health care facilities, remained low despite the Department of Health (DOH) announcement that weekly cases in 14 out of 17 cities and municipalities in NCR had grown.

“We have already learned by now that moderate Covid cases and low ICU use rate should not lead to boosting the alert level,” Lopez said.

DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire earlier said total bed usage as of June 7 remained at 19 percent while intensive care unit occupancy rate was at 16 percent, which is regarded to be low risk.

Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion has advocated lifting the status of a public health emergency, as the Philippines was designated as a low-risk country by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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