The Department of Health (DOH) has announced additional confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country over the weekend, bringing the Philippines' total to 10. This prompted the agency to raise the country's COVID-19 alert system to Code Red, Sub-level 1 after the first case of a local transmission was confirmed. But what does this mean?

Image courtesy of Senator Kiko Pangilinan's official Facebook page

The DOH said the Code Red is a "preemptive call to ensure national and local government and public and private healthcare providers can prepare for possible increase in suspected and confirmed cases."

Code Red means all hospital personnel are required to report for duty in their respective facilities to provide medical services.

The Health Secretary also recommended to Malacañang the declaration of a state of public health emergency, which the President will sign and declare on Monday, March 9, 2020. According to Health Secretary Francis Duque, this is “to facilitate the sufficient and immediate access to funding, particularly for local government units, and ease processes on procurement, mandatory reporting, mandatory quarantine, and travel restrictions, among others."

Maintain proper hygiene, mga par. Wash your hands with soap, which was found to be more effective in killing virus cells than alcohol or hand sanitizers. Keep in mind the 20-second rule, which means you should scrub your hands with soap at a minimum of 20 seconds. Mamili ka na lang ng 20-second na chorus mula sa paborito mong kanta na puwede mo sabayan sa paghugas.