Metro Manila mayors are reportedly "ready and willing" to downgrade the region to Alert Level 0 should the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) decide to approve it. That's according to the new Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Chairman, Romando Artes.
In a text conversation with Inquirer.NET, Artes shared that there is "no definite decision" on the issue of shifting down from Alert Level 1. He also stated that the MMDA is awaiting guidelines from the IATF regarding protocols for Alert Level 0. For now, Metro Manila mayors are ready to implement any mandates by the IATF.
There is still no clear plan for what Alert Level 0 would entail. In a media briefing last week, Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Francisco Duque III spoke of the possible directions the IATF could take.
Downgrading to Alert Level 0 would end most of the emergency health restrictions in the country amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Duque says implementing Alert Level 1 across the entire archipelago is also on the table. Such a measure would reportedly require four conditions: a low to minimal risk classification caseload, a low-risk healthcare utilization rate, the full vaccination of 70 percent of the target population, and the first dose vaccination of 80 percent of senior citizens.
While an announcement has yet to be made, the government still mandates citizens to follow basic health and safety protocols to protect themselves against COVID-19.