January 29, 2023

Local government units in the Cordillera have started to implement stricter border controls anew to limit human movement as the region’s general community quarantine classification was extended until April 30.

In Baguio, travelers from the National Capital Region and provinces of Laguna, Cavite, Bulacan, and Rizal, or the NCR plus bubble, are allowed entry, but only authorized persons outside of residences (APORs) and essential workers in permitted industries traveling for official functions.

The APORs must also register to hdf.baguio.gov.ph. and undergo the testing requirements and triage protocols.

In Abra and Mountain Province, travelers are required to register to the S-Pass System before they are allowed entry to the provinces. Travelers are advised to create an account at s-pass.ph, a travel management system developed by the Department of Science and Technology to facilitate local travels.

In an advisory posted by the Mountain Province Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office (DRRMO), travelers will not be allowed entry to the province without the quick response code generated by the S-Pass system.

The DRRMO, however, said those who are not using the S-Pass may directly coordinate with the municipality they are traveling to.

The same regulation is applied in Abra, with an addition that those manifesting symptoms of the Covid-19 will be denied entry to the province and referred to their place of origin.

In Benguet, strict border checks remain in effect.

Movement of people delivering essential goods and services also remain unhampered.

The Cordillera Regional Task Force and the Regional Inter-agency Task Force on Covid-19 earlier asked local government units in the region to adopt a uniform border control and quarantine policy.

IATF Resolution 2, s. 2021 provides guidelines on interzonal and intrazonal movement of people; the wearing face mask and face shield when entering and moving within the region, implementation of IT-based registry of APORs and non-APOR travelers to the region, entry protocols for APOR and non-APOR travelers from the region and outside provinces, and on movement of non-APOR workers within the region.

The regulation of movement in the region is in response to the move of the national IATF to address the continuous surge of Covid-19 cases in the Cordillera, one of the regions in the country that remain under GCQ.

As of March 30, the region recorded 19,669 cases of which 1,938 are active and 277 have died. – Jane B. Cadalig with a report from PIA