Palace says no need to panic but may deploy more soldiers, cops amid rising COVID-19 cases
Malacanang said on Thursday there is no need for the public to panic amid the rising cases of coronavirus disease in the country.
But Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said that if necessary, more policemen and soldiers could be deployed to ensure people are following the minimum health standards to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
"As of now, I don't think there's any need to panic because that's the nature of viruses - they tend to mutate...they will really infect a lot more," he said in a televised press briefing.
Roque noted that the health care utilization rate is not at critical level.
"We are in fact at moderate (level), so, we can give medical attention to those who will be seriously get sick," he said.
As of March 11, the Department of Health reported 3,749 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total cases to 607,048.
Roque said still the most effective way to combat COVID-19 transmission is to follow health protocols, such as wearing of face mask and face shield, frequent hand washing, and physical distancing.
He said if the people would continue to be complacent, COVID-19 cases might continue to increase.
While the government might no longer impose enhanced community quarantine, the most restrictive quarantine classification, Roque said other measures could be enforced.
"We will really strengthen our policies to implement the minimum health standards. If it's necessary that we use again more policemen and soldiers for this, we will do it. Because one of the areas where our people are somewhat complacent is on the gatherings, they do not follow social distancing...so there's really a need to use law enforcers for this," he said. Celerina Monte/DMS