June 18, 2021

Philippine authorities to do house-to-house search for people with COVID-19 symptoms

As the country’s capital has reverted back to Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ), presidential spokesperson revealed that health care workers will now do a house-to-house search to find suspect cases, trace contacts, and isolate them. This article written by Gaea Katreena Cabico and published by the Philippine Star on March 29, 2021 covers the details of this strategy.

According to Sec. Roque, the strategy is based on the Dharavi model, where medical workers are set up in different slum areas per day to screen symptoms and test for COVID-19. After the announcement of this plan, social media went abuzz as many citizens feel that this strategy is prone to abuse. In a statement, the Coalition for People’s Right to Health said, “The more people forced to do so with fear tactics, some may resist and be defensive. Having symptoms should not be likened to a crime, but treated appropriately with such patients willing to be tested”.

Editor’s Note: Does the government have any right to force entry into a home if one of the residents is exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms? What is the legal basis for this action? What is the scientific basis for the decision?

Our Philippine government is pushing the boundaries of its power. When will our judicial branch stand up and cry foul?

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