Palace official opposed to tightening of alert level despite Covid surge

Palace official opposed to tightening of alert level despite Covid surge

Presidential adviser for entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion. (Photo: Politiko)

MANILA — It’s the opinion of presidential adviser for entrepreneurship Jose Maria ‘Joey’ Concepcion that alert levels should not be escalated even if Covid-19 cases surge as long as the country’s hospital capacity rate remains low.

According to the Palace official, it is his belief that in view of the current situation, our country can no longer afford to place areas under lockdown because this will hinder the progress of businesses that are just reopening or getting back on their feet.

“A heightened alert level would severely impact the economy. Talagang babagsak ang economy ng Pilipinas. Ang economy natin is doing very well now, kailangan sumigla ito kasi kailangan natin din iyong job generation,” Concepcion pointed out in a public briefing.

“Dapat huwag natin itaas iyong alert levels natin. Kahit tumaas iyong infection level, kahit thousands ‘yan, pero iyong hospital capacity natin ay talagang mababa pa rin, dapat tuluy-tuloy pa rin itong Alert Level 1,” he added.

The presidential adviser cited that other countries have not imposed lockdowns or restricted (people’s) mobility even though they have high infection levels as long as their hospital capacity is low.

“We should follow that example. What government should (do is to) drive up the Covid-19 vaccination rate, especially the booster shots to maintain the protection among people since mobility is increasing due to loose restrictions,” he stressed.

In ending, Concepcion opined that health authorities should push people to get their booster shots even as he noted that there is no mandate on vaccination so it’s up to the Filipino people to get their booster shots, especially if they are economic frontliners.

Discussions on whether the alert level should be maintained or tightened were triggered by a prediction by experts that there will be an uptick of Covid infections due to the presence of a new sublineage of Omicron and as a result of superspreader events due to the recently concluded 2022 elections. (T. Cabrera/ai/mtvn)

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