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SARA: City gov’t to come up with new plan of action

THE city government is coming up with a new mechanism not to slow down the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, but to eliminate it.

In her daily program over Davao City Disaster Radio Friday, Mayor Sara Z. Duterte said there is a need to institute new reforms in the approach to stop the virus because she has realized that there is a need to change the mindset.

She said in the past the mindset was just to wait for a vaccine. “Vaccines are a dream at present. There is no vaccine available (yet) for commercial distribution,” Duterte said, adding that no one knows when the vaccine could be available.

“The goal is elimination, not mitigation and damage control,” she explained, pointing out that although the city government had its action plan, there was a disconnect among its components.

The plan, she added, needs to be “seamless as the virus is very predictable” because without a person to hop onto, it cannot exist.

Technology, particularly the use of quick response code, will be inserted into the plan for the city government to easily trace those exposed to an individual who contracted the virus.

“Hopefully with this intervention (the virus will be eliminated),” Duterte said.

She also pointed the need for everyone to understand about what the city government has been doing and what must be done both by the government and the people.

“It is very important that we are able to let you understand what we are doing (against the virus),” said Duterte as she presented the initial plan which will form part of the upcoming executive order that is still being drafted.

This is important, she added, as the number of active cases in the city have gone up to nearly 800 and that the dedicated facility of the Southern Philippine Medical Center is nearing its capacity.
Under the plan, she explained, is that the target is to reduce the number of infected residents to single digits.

The key component of the plan is prevention, testing, tracing and isolation.

While testing, tracing and isolation are functions of government, she added the people should get involved in preventing the spread of the virus.

In prevention, the key action is for people to embrace the minimum health standards like face mask, physical distancing and frequent handwashing. Also to be adopted is to stop travel for non-essential purposes.

“We have focused (on stopping) mass gathering),” she explained, pointing out that based on interviews on those infected, many of them contracted the virus from gatherings that are unnecessary.

On testing, the city government will only use reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction tests. “There is a schedule everyday of targeted random sampling,” she said as these tests are targeted at crowded residential areas, high density workplaces and individuals who are exposed to many people.

On tracing, those need to be traced are those close contacts of a positive case and that their close contacts. Those who have been traced must immediately go into quarantine and only when the contact that they are exposed to is found without the virus, they must stop quarantine.

hose who are found positive must be isolated and those who are in dire situations and those with vulnerabilities will be brought to the hospital.

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