Don’t do Xmas shopping in crowded areas – DOH

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    THE Department of Health (DOH) yesterday reminded the public planning to do their Christmas shopping in malls and other commercial centers to avoid crowded areas as the threat of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) remains.

    “The risk is very high when we go to places with a high number of people, like in Divisoria,” Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in a briefing. “Let us please avoid going to crowded areas, as much as possible.”

    She said wearing face shields and face masks is not enough protection in crowded areas such as shopping malls.

    “Even if we wear face masks and face shields, if we are in crowded areas, the possibility of transmission remains high,” she said.

    “The virus is easily transmitted if we are in very crowded places,” Vergeire added.

    Vergeire said the threat of getting COVID-19 still exists, and that is the reason community quarantine restrictions have not been totally lifted by the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID).

    Over the weekend, photos of people flocking to Divisoria in Manila to do their early Christmas shopping, without observing physical distancing, went viral.

    Manila Mayor Isko Moreno reiterated his appeal to Divisoria shoppers to strictly observe physical distancing and other health protocols to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

    Moreno reminded the public of the risk, and the amount they would have to spend if they are infected by the coronavirus.

    “Milyon po ang gagastusin ninyo pag kayo ay nagka-COVID at di pa tiyak kung kayo ay maliligtas (You will spend millions if you are infected by COVID and this aside from the risk that you might not be saved),” he said.