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Posted by Presidential Communications (Government of the Philippines) on Monday, April 6, 2020

President Rodrigo Duterte has approved a recommendation by an interagency task force to extend the enhanced community quarantine over Luzon island up to April 30, 2020.

Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases needed until mid-April to study the effects of the month-long quarantine, originally set to end April 12, on Covid-19 cases now that testing was ramping up.

‘Yung enhanced community quarantine is up to April 30, 11:59 p.m. Ito po ang recommendation ng IATF kay Pangulong Duterte at tinanggap ni Pangulong Duterte,” Nograles said in a virtual briefing.

Nograles said the task force, which had made the recommendation Monday evening, saw no need as of yet to expand the quarantine to the Visayas or Mindanao.

He said tests must have a 24-hour turnaround time and extensive contact tracing needed to be done to slow down the rate of transmission of the virus, which has infected 3,660 people in the Philippines.

Efforts were being undertaken to increase capacity to 27,000 tests a day by April 27, he added.

“By April 30, kailangan pa rin ang social distancing…The new normal is social, physical distancing pa rin. Pag wala ang disiplinang n’yan, useless ang sakripisyo natin (By April 30, we still need social distancing…The new normal is social, physical distancing. If we don’t have that discipline, our sacrifices are useless,” Nograles said.

In an address to the nation Monday night, President Duterte said the government was “inclined” to extend the quarantine up to April 30. (