Marcos inclined to extend state of public health emergency until year’s end
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, August 17) — President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. on Wednesday said he is inclined to extend the state of public health emergency due to COVID-19 until the end of the year.
Marcos said lifting the state of emergency, which is slated to last until September 12, would invalidate the emergency use authorization and compassionate special permits issued by the Food and Drug Administration for COVID-19 vaccines.
“Yes, we were just discussing it with Usec. [Ma. Rosario] Vergeire. Kasi maraming mga binibigay sa international medical community kapag state of emergency. WHO [World Health Organization] is one of them,” Marcos told reporters in a chance interview.
[Translation: Yes, we were just discussing it with Usec. Vergeire. Because many supplies are given to the international medical community when there is a state of emergency. WHO is one of them.]
“Kapag itigil natin yung state of emergency, matitigil ‘yun” he added. “But we are looking at amending the law in terms of procurement and all of that, in the middle of an emergency, but that will take time. So malamang (so most likely) we will extend it, we will extend it until the end of the year.”
[Translation: If we lift the state of emergency, the delivery of vaccines supplies will stop.]
Former President Rodrigo Duterte declared a state of emergency due to the pandemic in March 2020. He later extended it until Sept. 12, 2022
As of Aug. 16, data from the Department of Health showed that there were 3,838,062 COVID-19 cases nationwide. Of this number, 36,190 are active cases.
Meanwhile, more than 72 million Filipinos are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
The government recently launched a campaign to inoculate more senior citizens and to provide boosters to the target population in the first 100 days of the Marcos administration.