No test needed for vaxxed travelers to Cebu City; minors allowed out

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NO MORE test result requirement for vaccinated travelers to Cebu City, minors allowed to visit establishments, and karaoke bars reopening are among the highlights of the new directive governing the management of Covid-19 in the city.

The Cebu City Government will no longer require RT-PCR, antigen or saliva test results from persons entering Cebu City who are fully vaccinated against coronavirus disease (Covid-19), according to Directive 10-25-01 issued by Acting Mayor Michael Rama Monday, Oct. 25, 2021, to adopt the country’s Alert Level System in the management of the Covid-19 health emergency.

Cebu City was placed under Alert Level 2 from Oct. 20-31, 2021.

Cebu City residents may now present just their vaccination card with the QR code or the vaccination card from the Project Balik Buhay (PBB) as these are for vaccines approved under the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) List or Compassionate Special Permit (CSP) issued by the Philippine Food and Drug Administration or included in the Emergency Use Listing of the World Health Organization.

Those from provinces outside Cebu, on the other hand, must present their vaccination certificate from their city health officer or municipal health officer and will no longer be required to apply for the S-Pass for their entry to Cebu City.

Those who have not yet been vaccinated must submit their negative RT-PCR/ antigen/saliva test results from laboratories accredited by the Department of Health.

Truck drivers and their assistants delivering essential goods from other ports at least five times a week are exempted from submitting Covid-19 test results but will still be subjected to symptoms screening on arrival at the city pier, provided that if any one of them is unvaccinated or only partially vaccinated, they must submit RT-PCR test results once a month.

The new directive removes the financial burden travelers to Cebu City had to endure for more than a year amid the pandemic.

Under 15 years old

Under Directive 10-25-01, minors under the age of 15 are also now allowed in authorized establishments, provided they are accompanied by a parent or guardian who is fully vaccinated against Covid-19.

Minors do not need a guardian if they go out to access essential goods or essential services.

Councilor Joel Garganera, deputy chief implementer of the Emergency Operations Center (EOC), said this is to provide incentives to parents who are vaccinated against the virus and is allowed under Alert Level 2.

North district councilor Garganera said authorized establishments refer to malls, hotels, restaurants and those places where children have fun as several more establishments and activities are now allowed in Cebu City.

Still mandated to stay home are those with immunodeficiency or comorbidity, pregnant women, and those above 65 years old, except for obtaining essential goods and services, or to work in permitted industries.

However, fully vaccinated people over 65 years old may leave their homes and enter malls and establishments that other adults are permitted to enter.

The City Government through its Vaccination Operation Center has also sped up its vaccination of persons in the A2 (senior citizens) and A3 (persons with comorbidities) priority groups as outlined in the city’s current alert level.

Curfew

Rama’s directive also shortened the curfew hours in the city. Curfew will now be from 11:30 p.m. to 4 a.m. Previously, the curfew started at 10 p.m.

Cebu City police will adjust their deployment until midnight to monitor whether the establishments are really following the order of the Cebu City government.

Police Lt. Col. Wilbert Parilla, deputy city director for operations of the Cebu City Police Office, said during their roving of the pubs, they are accompanied by personnel from City Hall’s Business Permit and Licensing Office (BPLO) as well as Probe (Prevention, Restoration, Order, Beautification and Enhancement) to ensure that establishments stop serving intoxicating drinks by 11 p.m.

Since the consumption and serving of liquor in public places is allowed only in authorized establishments and subject to curfew, those who are found drinking outside such establishments or past curfew can be arrested.

Cinemas, karaoke bars

Under Alert Level 2, establishments that are allowed to operate at 50 percent indoor venue capacity (for fully vaccinated individuals) and 70 percent outdoor venue capacity, provided that all workers of these establishments are fully vaccinated against Covid-19, are venues for meetings, conferences and exhibitions; venues for parties and other social events; tourist attractions like libraries, museums and parks; dine-in services, personal care establishments like salons and those offering aesthetic services; fitness gyms and other venues for individual non-contact exercise and sports.

Business activities allowed for the first time under Alert Level 2 at 50 percent indoor venue capacity (for fully vaccinated individuals) and 70 percent outdoor venue capacity are amusement parks, internet cafes, billiard halls, arcades, bowling alleys, swimming pools; movie houses; limited face-to-face classes for basic education if approved by the Office of the President, and for higher education and technical-vocational education and training; licensure or entrance exams by government agencies; film, music and TV production; contact sports approved by the local government; fun fairs or kid amusement industries like playgrounds and play rooms; and karaoke bars, clubs and concert halls.

Establishments and activities considered as being allowed to operate for the first time must first present a pandemic plan to the Office of the Mayor through the EOC and the BPLO. (PAC, AYB, CTL)

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