The Philippines will remain under Alert Level 2 until January 15 despite the uptick in COVID-19 cases and concerns over the heavily-mutated Omicron variant, Malacanang announced Thursday.
Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles, who is also acting presidential spokesperson, said the entire country will stay under Alert Level 2 from January 1 to 15.
Under Alert Level 2, the maximum operational capacities for several businesses and activities is 50 percent for indoor venues, fully vaccinated persons, and those below 18 years of age, even if unvaccinated and 70 percent for outdoor venues provided all workers of the establishments are fully inoculated against COVID-19.
The Philippines is seeing an increase in COVID-19 infections as more people go out and join gatherings this holiday season, the Department of Health said. The agency on Wednesday reported 889 additional cases the highest since November 27.
Local authorities have so far detected four cases of the rapidly-spreading Omicron variant all among international arrivals.
The DOH earlier said the country is â€œwell-preparedâ€ to combat the Omicron variant, which is threatening health systems overseas.