Philippines still under Alert Level 2 until January 15, 2022; new county risk classification released

MANILA, Philippines – The Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) on Wednesday, December 29, 2021, approved the recommendation to maintain all provinces, highly urbanized cities, and independent component cities under Alert Level 2 from January 1, 2022 until January 15, 2022.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III
Health Secretary Francisco Duque III gives an update to President Rodrigo Roa Duterte on COVID-19 related concerns during a meeting with key government officials at the Malacañan Palace on December 27, 2021. Photo courtesy of PCOO.

The IATF likewise released an updated country risk classification effective January 1, 2022 until January 15, 2022.

Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia and Spain shall be under the Red List.

Under the Green List are the following:
  • Bangladesh
  • Benin
  • Bhutan
  • British Virgin Islands
  • China (Mainland)
  • Cote d’ Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
  • Djibouti
  • Equatorial Guinea
  • Falkland Islands (Malvinas)
  • Fiji
  • The Gambia
  • Guinea
  • Hong Kong (Chinese Special Administrative Region)
  • Indonesia
  • Kuwait
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Liberia
  • Montserrat
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Paraguay
  • Rwanda
  • Saba (Special Municipality of the Kingdom of the Netherlands)
  • Saint Barthelemy
  • Sao Tome and Principe
  • Senegal
  • Sierra Leone
  • Sint Eustatius
  • Taiwan
  • Timor-Leste (East Timor)
  • Togo
  • Uganda
  • United Arab Emirates.

All other countries/territories /jurisdictions not mentioned above shall be under the Yellow List.

Meanwhile, the IATF, upon the recommendation of the Department of Foreign Affairs, approved the acceptance/recognition for purposes of arrival quarantine protocols as well as for interzonal/intrazonal movement the national COVID-19 vaccination certificate of Armenia, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Kuwait, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, Thailand, United States of America and Oman.

This is in addition to such other countries/territories/ jurisdictions whose proofs of vaccination the IATF already approved for recognition in the Philippines, and without prejudice to such other proofs of vaccination approved by the IATF for all inbound travelers.

In this connection, the Bureau of Quarantine, the Department of Transportation – One Stop Shop and the Bureau of Immigration are directed to recognize only the proofs of vaccination thus approved by the IATF.

COVID-19 cases

The Philippines logged 1,623 additional COVID-19 cases on Thursday, December 30 bringing the country's total cases to 2,841,260, of which 11,772 or 0.4 percent are active.

This is the highest single-day tally since November 21, when 2,227 new cases were confirmed.

The Department of Health also reported that positivity rate, the percentage of people who tested positive for the virus among all who have been tested, jumped to 6.6%. This is the highest daily rate since October 31.

The health ministry on Wednesday attributed the spike in fresh cases to the public's holiday-related mobility, as well as their "reduced" compliance to minimum public health standards.

Meanwhile, deaths rose to 51,373 after the DOH confirmed 133 additional fatalities.

There were 256 more people who recovered from the contagious disease, raising the tally to 2,778,115.

— The Summit Express

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