By Jhon Aldrin Casinas

Pasig City’s Barangay San Antonio has adopted strict health and safety protocols as part of the “new normal” in their day-to-day operations as the National Capital Region (NCR) goes under a more relaxed quarantine measure starting Monday (June 1).

image0 2 - Barangay in Pasig sets pace for ‘new normal’ through frontliner testing, health protocols

Barangay San Antonio in Pasig City conducts free COVID-19 rapid testing for its frontliners and employees to ensure their safety and protection. (BSA Photos/ MANILA BULLETIN)

Barangay Chairman Raymond Lising said they have reconfigured their office setup to comply with the required guidelines to ensure the safety of their constituents.

Lising said a “no mask, no entry” policy will be implemented in the barangay hall. Markers reminding the public to observe physical distancing will be also placed to ensure the smooth flow of people.

“We will also be implementing a minimal-day work week so that social distancing will really be observed, meaning only 50 percent of our personnel will have to go to the barangay,” he said.

With the start of the general community quarantine (GCQ) in Metro Manila on June 1, the village chief has urged his constituents to continue observing strict health measures, stressing that the threat of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is still lurking around the corner.

“Prevention is really better than cure. With or without community quarantine, I believe personal vigilance is the best weapon against COVID-19. Not because the quarantine has eased, we will be complacent,” Lising said.

As part of the barangay’s efforts against the pandemic, Barangay San Antonio has recently subjected 103 barangay employees to rapid testing.

Lising said the initiative, which is partially funded by the barangay, aims to ensure the welfare of their frontliners, saying the conduct of COVID-19 testing is very important to stop the spread of the disease.

“Conducting this COVID-19 testing is very crucial. Our frontliners are the ones very exposed as we continue to serve the people during these pandemic to ensure that they are safe and healthy in their homes,” he said.

He said the first batch of tested frontliners are composed of personnel from Emergency Management Service (EMS), Fire Department, Rescue, Violence Against Women and Children (VAWC), Command Center, SK officials, and other barangay personnel.

In the coming days, Lising said they are eyeing to test around 50 additional personnel. Those who will test positive in the rapid test will be placed in isolation and will undergo a confirmatory polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test.

“Our barangay really allotted the fund for this mass testing. We protect our residents by ensuring our frontliners, the people serving them at the barangay, are COVID-free,” the chairman said.

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