The government’s “Oplan Kalinga” is being implemented precisely to “take care” of COVID-positive patients by providing them with medical treatment and assistance in designated quarantine facilities, and to reduce community transmission of the virus, National Action Plan Against COVID-19 Deputy Chief Implementer Secretary Vince Dizon said Thursday. 

“In order to curb the spread of the virus in our communities, especially in densely populated communities, which is a significant portion of our area in our big cities like Metro Manila, we need to make sure that those who test positive for the virus are isolated from other people especially their loved ones who can easily be infected,” Dizon said in an interview. 

“This is meant to take care not only of our kababayans who are going to get sick, but most importantly, take care of their loved ones and the community at large,” he stressed.  

He said Oplan Kalinga was already implemented in Navotas and Malabon, and almost 100 COVID-positive patients are now being taken care of at quarantine facilities. 

Dizon allayed fears on Oplan Kalinga, saying the local government units and barangay health workers are the ones who will be referring and transporting COVID-positive patients to designated quarantine facilities, with the assistance of law enforcement units. 

“It’s not true that the way this will be implemented is for policemen to be knocking on doors and picking people up from their homes. That is absolutely false. I want to assure everybody that that is not what’s going to happen,” he said. 

“We are asking all of our citizens, huwag kayo matatakot dahil para sa inyo ito at para ito sa kapakanan ng inyong mahal sa buhay,” Dizon said. 

COVID-positive patients with mild symptoms or are asymptomatic can undergo home quarantine provided that they can be isolated in a separate bedroom, they have their own bathroom, and they are not living with vulnerable individuals. 

Dizon also emphasized that one of the most important factors in the fight against COVID-19 is still basic discipline in wearing masks, good hygiene, and practicing physical distancing. 

“We have to enforce these standards on our people and we have to communicate with them that we need to do this. Our people have to take the responsibility of fighting COVID-19 to ourselves. We have to be responsible in really making sure that we protect ourselves and other people, especially the vulnerable,” he said.