April 2, 2023

The national Inter-Agency Task Force on Covid-19 has placed three provinces in the Cordillera under alert level 4 from Jan. 21 to 31.
The IATF approved the escalation of Ifugao, Kalinga, and Mountain Province to stricter alert level 4, which means an area has reached “high” health care utilization, two-week growth, and average daily attack (ADAR) rates.
Northern Samar was also escalated to the same alert level.
Apayao, meanwhile, was escalated to alert level 3, along with 14 other provinces in the country.
Data from the Department of Health-Cordillera showed the health care utilization rates of Ifugao, Kalinga, and Mountain Province were 60.87 percent, 92 percent, and 81.41 percent, respectively as of Jan. 20.
As of Jan. 17, Ifugao’s ADAR, or the number of new cases over a two-week period, was posted at 12.19 percent; Kalinga, 22.82 percent; and Mountain Province, 16.52 percent.
The Cordillera has logged 104,511 cases of which 8,914 are active as of Jan. 20. The number of Covid-19 deaths in the region is 2,322.
Under alert level 4, face-to-face classes for basic, higher educational institutions, and technical-vocational schools are prohibited, except those that obtained approval from the IATF.
Also prohibited are contact sports and operation of cinemas, venues with live or wind instrument performers, funfairs and amusement parks, casinos, horse raising, cockfighting, and lottery, among other gaming establishments.
Gatherings in residences among individuals not belonging to the same household are also prohibited.
Establishments that have obtained safety seal certification are allowed to operate but on a 10 percent indoor capacity for fully vaccinated individuals and 30 percent outdoor, such as venues for meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions; tourist attractions; and recreational areas.
Gatherings for necrological services, wakes, inurnment, and funerals are also allowed, but limited to immediate family members and with strict compliance with the minimum health protocols. – Jane B. Cadalig