Vergeire: “Pag-uusapan ito lahat sa IATF because we need to be able to rescind kung saka-sakali, o amyendahan itong EO 168 for us to relax these restrictions”
IATF — DOH Officer-in-charge Maria Rosario Vergeire said that the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases will discuss the possible easing of the country’s border restrictions for foreign travelers.
On Tuesday, Vergeire said that the Department of Health (DOH) is studying the possibility of recommending further easing of border restrictions for foreigners who wish to travel in the country.
She was asked at a press conference when would be the proper time to lift the entry requirements for foreigners before entering the country, considering that some countries have already scrapped such restrictions on their own amidst the coronavirus pandemic.
In response to the question, Vergerie said that the Department of Health still abides by the Executive Order 168 which created the IATF.
The said EO stated that among the functions of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases is to prevent and/or minimize the entry of confirmed or suspected patients with emerging infectious diseases into the Philippines through rigid screening and identification of EID suspects, and the institutionalization of a surveillance, alert, and quarantine system in all ports of entry.
“Lahat pinagaaralan ngayon. Even the border restrictions, pinagaaralan na po ng mga eksperto natin para sa susunod natin na IATF, we will be able to discuss these also with the other sectors,” Vergeire said.
It was last February when the IATF already relaxed the travel restrictions, allowing the entry of foreign travelers in the country for tourism and business purposes under certain conditions.
Among the requirements for foreign travelers before entering the Philippines is full vaccination against COVID-19, except for minord below 12 years old traveling with their fully vaccinated foreign parents.