THE Department of Health on Thursday advised voters exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms to stay at home and refrain from going out during the May 9 Election Day.
Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said that since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Department of Health has always advised those having symptoms to self-regulate by staying at home to avoid transmitting the virus to others.
“We all know that elections and voting would be very important for every Filipino. Gusto natin i-exercise natin ‘yung right na ‘yan. Pero kapag tayo ay may sintomas na, hindi po natin pwedeng ipilit kasi you might be infecting other people,” she said.
However, Vergeire clarified that the DOH is advising voters who have symptoms not to go to their precincts as they may spread the disease.
“I just want to be clear on that. The DOH is advising people, if you have symptoms, do not go out and go to your precincts baka po kasi tayo magkaron ng pagkakahawa-hawaan diyan,” she said.
The DOH official further stressed the importance of the people’s cooperation on this matter as there will be crowding in polling precincts on election day.
President Rodrigo Duterte earlier reminded the voters to comply with the minimum public health standards in polling places on Election Day to prevent another COVID-19 surge in the country, considering the separate warnings of the DOH and OCTA Research of a possible increase in COVID-19 infections.
However, in early April, Commission on Elections Commissioner Aimee Torrefranca-Neri said that the poll body is planning to set up “isolation polling places” for voters showing COVID-19 symptoms during Election Day.