Metro Manila General Community Quarantine

Metro Manila is set to shift to general community quarantine (GCQ) status beginning on September 8 to 30, 2021. The new classification brings with it some key changes, including the introduction of granular lockdowns across the nation's capital.

The new quarantine classification may change traffic flow in Metro Manila and alter checkpoints in the affected areas. Motorists are advised to plan their routes ahead of time and consider using alternative routes such as the Skyway and other expressways

On Monday, the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) formalized its decision to recommend the change to GCQ. Harry Roque, serving as spokesperson for the President and the IATF, made the announcements in a televised address.

According to Roque, the National Capital Region (NCR) will be the site of a localized lockdown pilot program that will allow local government units (LGUs) to enforce lockdowns in smaller areas within their jurisdiction. Before this, entire cities or regions were classified together under the different community quarantine levels.

Exact details for the granular lockdown pilot program are yet to be announced, but Roque stated that more information will be announced no later than Tuesday, September 7.

Many in the government believe that granular lockdowns are the best solution for helping stop the spread of COVID-19, which has been worsening in recent weeks. The Department of Health (DOH) is backing localized lockdowns, and the agency says closing down areas with a high amount of cases could be more effective than isolating single patients. 

DOH undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire also stated that the entirety of NCR, except the City of Manila, is under Alert Level 4 due to the rising number of cases across the country's capital. With Metro Manila's latest change in quarantine status, the government hopes for some measure of improvement sooner rather than later.

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