A total of 78 provinces and 178 component cities and municipalities are now under Alert Level (AL) 1.
This after the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Diseases (IATF) on Friday placed 20 more areas under the lowest AL in terms of the public health risk posed by Covid-19 infection last Friday.
In a news statement, Acting Presidential Spokesman Martin M. Andanar said among the newly declared AL 1 areas are Mountain Province in the Cordillera Administrative Region, Southern Leyte in Region 8 and Misamis Oriental in Region 10.
He said other new inclusions in the list of AL 1 areas are Buguias in Benguet in the Cordillera Administrative Region, Atimonan and Tiaong in Quezon in Region 4-A, Santa Magdalena in Sorsogon and City of Masbate in Masbate in Region 5, Batad and Zarraga in Iloilo in Region 6, City of Talisay in Cebu in Region 7, Javier (Bugho) and La Paz in Leyte, Maslog in Easter Samar and Paranas (Wright) in Samar (Western Samar) in Region 8, Linamon in Lanao del Norte and Calamba in Misamis Occidental in Region 10, Padada in Davao del Sur in Region 11, Sibagat in Agusan del Sur and Tubajon and Cagdianao in Dinagat Islands in Caraga.
“This Alert Level 1 status in the above mentioned areas shall take effect tomorrow, April 9, 2022 until April 15, 2022,” Andanar said
The IATF updated its AL 1 list after National Task Force for Covid-19 (NTF) chief implementer Carlito G. Galvez, Jr. reported last Tuesday that all regions except MIMAROPA, Region 12, and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) were already able to inoculate over 70 percent of their eligible population against Covid-19.
Galvez said they are currently trying to administer booster shots to inoculated individuals in the three regions, particularly in BARMM, which currently have a 27 percent (fully vaccinated) to 34 percent (first dose) vaccination rate—the lowest vaccination rate nationwide.
The 70-percent vaccination rate is one of the main criteria of the IATF before an area could be placed under AL 1.
An AL 1 classification is highly sought by the business sector since it allows establishments and public transportation in an area to operate at 100 percent capacity.
The Department of Health earlier said it will only recommend the implementation of an AL 0 or the “new normal,” wherein there will be fewer Covid-related restrictions, once the entire country is under Alert Level 1.