DOH closely monitors countries with new COVID-19 strain 

CALOOCAN CITY, Dec. 28 (PIA) -- The Department of Health (DOH) is closely monitoring the countries with cases of the new COVID-19 variant following the recent reports on the documented cases in  United Kingdom, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Australia.

Health  Secretary Francisco Duque III  directed the DOH technical teams including medical experts to review the proposals for stricter control measures for incoming travelers.

“Expert recommendations will be presented to the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) in its meeting on December 28,” the DOH said in a press statement.

The DOH added that they are also looking at the possible restrictions of entry for travellers coming from the countries with identified cases of the new COVID-19 variant.

“This is being revisited alongside the new risk classification for provinces, HUCs, and ICCs and the anticipated post-holiday surge,” the DOH said.

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte recently approved the IATF resolution no. 90 where all flights from United Kingdom shall be temporarily suspended effective on December 24 until December 31.

The President likewise approved the extension of the ban for additional two weeks during the IATF meeting on December 26.

Meanwhile, DOH Secretary Duque III reminded the public to continue to be cautious and be mindful on the possible COVID-19 surge during the holiday season.

"Ang laban natin ito ay hindi kakayanin ng ating gobyerno at ng sector ng kalusugan. Kailangan po namin ng kooperasyon ng bawat mamamayan in our own ways," Duque III said. 

"We can stop the surge from happening noy only this holiday season and I  hope that even in the succeeding months. Let us continue to be more cautious and mindful to prevent the increase of COVID-19 cases. (PIA-NCR)


Source: Philippines Information Agency (

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