MANILA, Aug 1 (Mabuhay) — Senate President Vicente Sotto III and Senator Panfilo Lacson both agree that Metro Manila should be placed again under the much stricter enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) as the cases of COVID-19 in the country continue to increase.

The two senators issued separate statements in response to calls from medical professionals and groups calling for a two-week return to an ECQ status to give them time to recuperate from exhaustion while allowing the government to recalibrate its strategies against the global pandemic.

“It is a valid request that Malacañang should seriously consider,” Lacson told reporters on Saturday.

The lawmaker suggested that “some adjustments” be made in the distribution of government subsidy to the most basic necessities of those who need it the most.

“What is important is to prevent an obvious pattern of upsurge in the daily coronavirus infection. Putting human lives on top of all considerations is a no-brainer, given the choice,” he added.

He said data management by this time – more than four months into the nationwide quarantines – should have already been in place and readily implementable.

For his part, Sotto’s brief response was “I concur,” when asked about the medical workers’ plea to revert to an ECQ status.

Citing the non-stop admission of COVID-19 patients in hospitals, Philippine College of Physicians Vice President Dr. Maricar Limpin on Friday said appealed for a two-week ECQ as many hospital workers are already experiencing physical exhaustion and depression.

President Rodrigo Duterte retained the general community quarantine (GCQ) over Metro Manila until August 15.

A GCQ had also been declared over Bulacan, Batangas, Cavite, Laguna, Rizal, Cebu City, Lapu-Lapu City, Mandaue City, Minglanilla and Consolacion towns in Cebu province, and Zamboanga City, while the rest of the country is under a modified GCQ. (MNS)

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