Press Release | 19 July 2022

Following the directive of the President to retain the COVID-19 Alert Level System (ALS) for now, the Department of Health (DOH) as Chair of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) announces that for the period July 16 to 31, 2022, General Santos City, along with 18 other LGUs all over the country are de-escalated to Alert Level 1 status. The DOH noted, based on IATF-EID metrics, that these areas were able to de-escalate by maintaining their case classification and total beds utilization rates at low risk, and reaching or nearing the vaccination thresholds for target population and target A2 (senior citizens) priority group.

The National Capital Region shall remain under Alert Level 1 for the same period. Also placed under Alert Level 1 during the same period are the following areas: For LUZON, Cordillera Administrative Region: Abra, Apayao, Kalinga, Mountain Province, and Baguio City; Region I: Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, La Union, Pangasinan, and Dagupan City; Region II: Batanes, Cagayan, Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino, and City of Santiago; Region III: Aurora, Bataan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Tarlac, Zambales, Angeles City, and Olongapo City; Region IV-A: Batangas, Cavite, Laguna, Rizal, and Lucena City; Region IV-B: Marinduque, Oriental Mindoro, Romblon, and Puerto Princesa City; and Region V: Albay, Catanduanes, Naga City, and Sorsogon.  For the VISAYAS, Region VI: Aklan, Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo Province, Bacolod City, and Iloilo City; Region VII: Siquijor, Cebu City, Lapu-Lapu City, and Mandaue City; and Region VIII: Biliran, Eastern Samar, Southern Leyte, Ormoc City, and Tacloban City.  For MINDANAO, Region IX: Zamboanga City; Region X: Camiguin, Bukidnon, Misamis Occidental, Misamis Oriental, Cagayan de Oro City, and Iligan City; Region XI: Davao City and Davao Oriental; Region XII: South Cotabato and General Santos City; CARAGA: Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Surigao del Sur and Butuan City; and BARMM: Cotabato City.

The following component cities and municipalities shall likewise be placed under Alert Level 1 for the same period: For LUZON, Cordillera Administrative Region: Sablan, Benguet;  Region IV-A: Alabat, Quezon; Region IV-B: Magsaysay and Paluan, Occidental Mindoro; and Region V: San Fernando, Masbate.  For the VISAYAS, Region VI: Ilog, Negros Occidental; Region VII: Albuquerque, Bohol; and Region VIII: Motiong, Samar.  For MINDANAO, Region IX: Guipos and San Miguel, Zamboanga del Sur; Region X: Kolambugan, Lanao Del Norte; Region XI: Santo Tomas, Davao del Norte and Santa Maria, Davao Occidental; CARAGA: Bacuag, Placer, and Tubod, Surigao del Norte; and Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao: Bubong and Lumbatan, Lanao del Sur.

Meanwhile, the following provinces, highly urbanized cities (HUCs), and independent component cities (ICCs) shall remain under Alert Level 2, without prejudice to their respective component cities and municipalities which may be under a different alert level classification: For LUZON: Cordillera Administrative Region: Benguet, Ifugao; Region IV-A: Quezon Province; Region IV-B: Occidental Mindoro and Palawan; and Region V: Camarines Norte, Camarines Sur, and Masbate. For the VISAYAS, Region VI: Antique and Negros Occidental; Region VII: Bohol, Cebu, and Negros Oriental; and Region VIII: Leyte, Northern Samar and Western Samar. For MINDANAO, Region IX: City of Isabela, Zamboanga del Sur, Zamboanga del Norte and Zamboanga Sibugay; Region X: Lanao del Norte; Region XI: Davao del Norte, Davao del Sur, Davao de Oro and Davao Occidental; Region XII: North Cotabato, Sarangani, and Sultan Kudarat; CARAGA: Dinagat Islands and Surigao del Norte; and Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao: Basilan, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi.

Moving forward, the DOH, upon instructions of the President and with the advice of health experts, is reviewing future directions for the COVID-19 ALS. The President has also requested the DOH for recommendations on the updated membership of the IATF-EID, to allow for faster science- and evidence-based decisions. Meanwhile, while waiting for the changes, DOH as IATF-EID Chair will streamline meetings and processes with clear directives to assist in safe reopening, and will be utilizing the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) platform.

“Makakaasa po ang ating mga kababayan na mananatili ang gabay pangkalusugan ng kagawaran. Amin pong inaaral kung paano natin maipaparating ng mas maigi pa sa taumbayan kung ano ang kasalukuyang kalagayan ng COVID-19 para sila ay makaiwas dito (Our kababayans can expect that the Department's health advice will remain. We are studying how we can better inform the people about the current COVID-19 situation so that they can avoid it.),” said Dr. Maria Rosario Singh-Vergeire, Officer-in-Charge, Department of Health.