Despite the exodus of some Metro Manila residents to bus terminals across the metro, some people working in the National Capital Region (NDR) decided to stay and not join the mass exodus to the provinces amidst the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak in the country.

Earlier this week, President Rodrigo Duterte placed the whole NCR under ‘community quarantine’ until April 14, 2020, to contain the spread of the infectious COVID-19 disease in the country.

Immediately following his announcement, some NCR residents trooped to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), major bus terminals in Cubao, Quezon City and other parts of Metro Manila hoping to be with their loved ones before the implementation of the lockdown.

But some chose to stay behind.

Aya, a creative professional in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig, is one of the few who decided to stay in Metro Manila amidst the outbreak.

“It’s more risky to be in the terminals since a lot of people are going home to their provinces. And secondly, I don’t also want to put my family and my hometown at risk. I hope I don’t have it but what if I did? You have to be careful and make sacrifices during these times,” she stated.

“I’m worried for myself because I’m not around to be with my family right now and I’m worried for them as well. It’s scary because some of the confirmed patients are asymptomatic. So, you’ll really never know,” she added.

Another worker who decided to stay in Manila is Vincent, a nurse in Makati.

“Nagdecide akong magstay kasi kailangan at napakasarap sa pakiramdam na ma-educate mo ‘yung ibang employees na walang knowledge, at matulungan sila sa abot ng makakaya ko bilang isang health care worker. Hindi ito madali kasi at risk ‘yung kalusugan ko. Masarap tumulong ng walang kapalit lalo na kapag marami kang natutulungan at makikita mong nagi-improve ang kalusugan or nape-prevent mo silang magkasakit. Binigyan ako ng chance na makapag aral at tumulong, so why not share it sa iba,” he said.

The community quarantine is subject to daily evaluation as per the Inter-agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IAFT-EID) headed by the Department of Health (DOH).  (RJ Espartinez)