Face Shield Use in Philippines Dropped as Covid Cases Fall
(Bloomberg) -- President Rodrigo Duterte said face shields will no longer be required in many areas in the Philippines, easing the mandate more than a year after becoming one of the few countries in the world to require the plastic barriers against Covid-19.
Face shields will only be mandatory in areas where there’s a strict lockdown, according to a memorandum from Duterte’s office. Wearing them has been “cumbersome,” Duterte said at a briefing aired late Monday.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not recommend its use against Covid-19 because its “effectiveness is unknown at this time,” while the World Health Organization said this equipment can be used for eye protection during outbreaks. In the Philippines, a Senate probe has looked into allegations that face shields bought by the government were overpriced -- a claim that officials have denied.
Duterte, on Monday night, also approved the health department’s recommendation for health workers to receive vaccine boosters and called on local governments to again ban kids in malls after a report that a two-year-old boy tested positive for Covid-19 days after going to a mall. Daily infections have eased to less than 2,000 in the past days.
In the same briefing, Duterte said the Philippine economy “can soon return to its pre-pandemic performance” after gaining traction last quarter on strong household consumption.
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