The Department of Health, also known as the DOH, announced that it will request for an extension regarding the COVID-19 state of calamity from President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. if Congress does not pass a law by the end of the year to ensure the government's pandemic response efforts can continue. This request will be made in order to ensure that the necessary measures and provisions are still implemented to address the ongoing impact of the virus.
The reason for this action is because the state of calamity for COVID-19 is about to expire within the year. This would mean there will be no more vaccination efforts, and price regulations on pandemic response items. Though if the request for extension is accepted, the law would introduce Philippine Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to lessen the COVID-19 virus and other diseases to spread.
It is unlikely that the law creating the Philippine Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will be passed by the end of the year. The House of Representatives is expected to approve the law on its third reading next week, but it is still being considered by a Senate committee.
As we approach the Christmas holiday season, we must remember to stay safe and protect ourselves and those around us from the COVID-19 virus. While it can be tempting to let our guard down and gather with loved ones, it is important to continue practise social distancing, wearing masks, and washing our hands regularly to prevent the spread of the virus.
We can still enjoy the holiday season while keeping ourselves and others safe. Consider virtual gatherings with friends and family instead of in-person gatherings, and be sure to follow the guidelines set forth by local health officials.
Let's all do our part to keep each other safe and healthy during this holiday season.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!