An infectious diseases expert on Friday said the government should maintain the face mask requirement even under Alert Level 0.

In a “Laging Handa” briefing, Dr. Rontgene Solante said face masks were necessary in preventing the spread of Covid-19, which is airborne.

“We still have to maintain iyong mask natin, iyong pagsusuot ng face mask even if we’ll be on Alert Level 0 because I think that’s the more important part of protection even if other limitations will be lifted,” he said.

Solante said the country was ready to implement Alert Level 0 in some of its parts.

“At this point, based on the metrics na nakikita natin ngayon especially sa pagbaba ng mga kaso at saka iyong healthcare utilization rate natin, ito iyong dalawang tinitingnan namin na if ever we will be downgrading to Alert Level 0, mukhang ready na tayo,” he said.

Alert Level 0 is considered by health experts as the “new normal.”

The country’s current alert levels will expire on March 15.

Alert Level 0 guidelines have yet to be finalized by the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) on Emerging Infectious Diseases.

The Philippines has 48,793 active Covid-19 cases as of March 6. John Ezekiel J. Hirro