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Lockdowns nixed as ‘reactive’
SENATOR Imee Marcos urged the government to stop resorting to lockdowns as a default measure in controlling the Covid-19 pandemic and instead improve testing capacity to detect cases of infection early and isolate them immediately.
“Living with the virus should be our goal rather than achieving a zero-COVID target. Lockdowns are reactive, not proactive,” Marcos said.
Marcos, who chairs the Senate Committee on Economic Affairs, said the 2022 budget must seriously fund the country’s testing capacity to prevent the “blanket disruption in livelihood, income generation, and overall economic growth.”
The senator credited the government for lowering the pandemic’s reproduction rate since the August lockdown but added that unless testing capacity is improved to guard the gains that have been made, the country will be stuck in a constant rehash of alert levels and quarantine protocols.
The COVID-19 reproduction rate in the country, which reached a high of 2.04 in March 2020, has gone down this year from a high of 1.32 percent last March to 0.52 percent this week.