Zamora strengthens implementation of health, safety protocols in San Juan
CALOOCAN CITY, July 9, (PIA) — With the country’s record-breaking numbers of new confirmed COVID-19 infections – 2,434 on July 5, 2,099 on July 6 and and 1,540 on July 7, Mayor Francis Zamora ordered a more strict implementation of health and safety measures in San Juan City.
Zamora has also extended the temporary closure of Agora Market to July 15.The market was temporarily closed since July 1 after a vendor tested positive of COVID-19.
The extension is in compliance with the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging and Infectious Diseases after 23 of its 647 vendors and workers that were swab tested on July 1 and 2 yielded positive results. All the vendors at the market were quarantined after undergoing the swab tests while waiting for the results.
“I ordered the temporary closure of the market pending the results of the swab tests conducted on our market vendors and workers. Unfortunately, a number of them turned out positive so we are extending the closure as per the guidelines of IATF and NTF. The health and well-being of San Juañenos must take precedence,” Zamora said.
According to the mayor, all those who tested positive are asymptomatic and are now in isolation while being provided with medical attention. Their close contacts have also been tested and are in quarantine.
Only those who tested negative and have not been in close contacts with COVID positive patients will be allowed to return to work on July 16 after securing a special health clearance from the City Health Office.
The market’s 3.74% positivity rate is much lower than NCR’s 6.8%, however, Zamora said he does not want to be complacent and opted to observe stricter rules.
“To ensure our constituents safety when they come to the market, the city government will implement stringent measures through our Business Permits and Licensing Office and our City Health Office with the help of the market administrator and the vendors,” the mayor said.
In a resent consultative meeting, Zamora said, representatives of the vendors and workers organizations in Agora Market agreed to follow stricter protocols and appoint Health and Safety Protocol Officers to help the San Juan Police and City Health personnel in implementing precautionary measures to avoid further spread of the virus.
The vendors will be allowed to go back in the Agora Market, which is continuously being sanitized, on July 16.
The City Health Office has identified the market as the epicenter of the recent rise in COVID-19 cases in San Juan City.
Meanwhile, portions of C. Santos Street in Barangay Balong Bato, with seven (7) residents positive of the coronavirus, and J. Eustaquio Street in Barangay Progresso, with five (5) confirmed cases were declared Critical Zones from July 7 to July 22 and placed under Enhanced Community Quarantine.
“We want to make sure we contain the virus and prevent it from spreading to other areas. The residents along these streets will be taken care of by the San Juan City Government,” Zamora assured.
The affected 153 families will be given food packs four (4) times during their 15-day quarantine. While under ECQ, police and barangay personnel will be manning key posts to make sure the residents abide by the ECQ protocols.
San Juan Medical Center’s OB and Pediatric Wards are also temporarily closed after two of its staff tested positive for COVID-19.
Medical Director Ret. Gen. Dr. Joseph Acosta ordered the temporary closure of the wards after a doctor and a nurse, despite being in full PPE, turned out positive after being exposed to a COVID-19-positive patient who had to undergo emergency C-section and hysterectomy in the hospital.
All close contacts of the patients and the medical personnel were already swab tested and quarantined,” Dr. Acosta revealed.
The wards are expected to open on Saturday, July 11, after thorough disinfection and once all swab test results are released.
Zamora has also allowed skeletal work force in alternate two-week schedule among city hall employees to avoid crowding in the offices.
According to the mayor, the skeletal will work for two straight weeks at the office and work from home for the following two weeks.
All city employees will be required to undergo free RT-PCR tests to make sure they are COVID-19-free.
“The San Juan City Government remains committed to the highest standards of public service. As part of our precautionary measures and despite the changes in our work schedule, we will continue to provide the much-needed work in combatting the virus. We will continue to serve the public to the best of our abilities and in spite of the pandemic,” Zamora affirmed. (San Juan City PIO/PIA-NCR)