On Sunday, The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) authorized revisions to the guidelines for implementing the Alert Level System for Covid-19 response across the country.
The IATF also approved the National Capital Region and 38 additional locations being placed on Alert Level 1 from March 1 to 15.
Under Alert Level 1, the IATF said that “there are no restrictions in terms of indoor and outdoor capacities. Everyone can undertake intrazonal and interzonal travel without regard to age and even comorbidities.”
All establishments, people, or activities are also permitted to operate, work, or engage in activities up to the total on-site or venue seating capacity, as long as they meet minimal public health standards.
The following are some of the protocols that must be followed under Alert Level 1:
- Well-fitted face masks shall be worn properly at all times, whether outdoors or in indoor private or public establishment, except when eating and drinking, participating in team and individual sports in venues where ventilation standards and physical distance can be maintained;
- Agencies and instrumentalities of the government shall likewise adhere to 100 percent on-site workforce.
- All private offices and workplaces, including public and private construction sites, may operate at full 100 percent capacity, consistent with national issuances on vaccination requirements for on-site work.
- On the other hand, public transportation in areas under Alert Level 1 shall be at full seating capacity.
- For aviation, maritime and rail public transport operating in and out of Alert Levels 1 areas, the passenger capacity will be at 100 percent. The use of acrylic and/or plastic dividers in public transportation shall not be required.
- The use of the Safe, Swift and Smart Passage (S-PaSS) travel management system shall likewise not be required for interzonal travel to areas under Alert Level 1.
- On contact tracing, the use of health declaration forms/paper-based contact tracing shall not be required for all the agencies and establishments under Alert Level 1.
- The use of digital contact tracing such as the StaySafe.PH application is optional for all the agencies and establishments.
- On testing prioritization, testing protocols shall be implemented, consistent with national guidelines, for individuals who are unvaccinated or have higher exposure risk pursuant to IATF Resolution No. 148-B and No. 149, s. 2021.
- The Hospital Infection Prevention and Control Committees (HIPCC) may implement testing protocols in health facilities for health workers and patients based on their assessment of risk and benefit.
- Under Alert Level 1, businesses are no longer obligated to set up isolation rooms in the workplace.
- On treatment, close contacts, asymptomatic confirmed cases and mild to moderate confirmed cases shall be managed at the primary care level, while confirmed cases with severe and critical symptoms shall be managed in the appropriate health care facility.
- In the case of reintegration, isolation can be discontinued upon completion of the recommended isolation period, provided that they do not have fever for at least 24 hours without the use of any antipyretic medications, and shall have improvement of respiratory signs and symptoms.
- For the purpose of claiming sick leave, health benefits or other relevant processes wherein the proofs of Covid-19 management are necessary, a medical certification may suffice.
Individuals aged 18 and up will be required to show proof of complete vaccination before attending large events or entering indoor facilities, including but not limited to:
- In-person religious gatherings; gatherings for necrological services, wakes, inurnment and funerals for those who died of causes other than Covi-19 and for the cremains of the Covid-19 deceased;
- All indoor dine-in services of food preparation establishments such as kiosks, commissaries, restaurants and eateries. For outdoor or al fresco dining and take out channels, no proof of full vaccination is required;
- All indoor personal care establishments such as barbershops, hair spas, hair salons, and nail spas, and those offering aesthetic/cosmetic services or procedures, make-up services, salons, spas, reflexology and other similar procedures including home service options;
- Fitness studios, gyms and venues for exercise and sports;
- All indoor cinemas or movie houses operating at full capacity;
- Meetings, incentives, conferences, exhibition events and permitted venues for social events such as parties, wedding receptions, engagement parties, wedding anniversaries, debut and birthday parties, family reunions, and bridal or baby showers;
- Venues with live voice or wind-instrument performers and audiences such as in karaoke bars, clubs, concert halls and theaters;
- Indoor ancillary establishments in hotels and other accommodation establishments; and
- Venues for election-related events.
Children under the age of 17 will not be required to provide proof of vaccination. – WhatALife!