THE CITY OF DAVAO – The city’s tourist operations office (CTOO) assured Dabawenyos on Wednesday that the strict application of coronavirus disease 2091 (Covid-19) protocols was observed in accredited multi-use hotels (MUH) serving as Quarantine facilities for Filipino workers returning overseas (ROFW) and Filipinos returning overseas (ROF).
The insurance came after the Department of Tourism (DOT) suspended a Makati hotel’s accreditation and revoked its license as an MHU after failing to prevent a guest from breaking quarantine rules.
“We closely monitor our ROFs with the help of the Tourism Police. We made sure there were police officers assigned to hotels, ”CTOO director Generose Tecson told the Philippine News Agency in an interview.
She added that unlike other entry points, they do not allow ROFs to take public transport or be picked up by relatives or family members.
“OFWs are transported by bus to their hotels while non-OFWs are picked up by their respective hotels,” Tecson said.
Since the city government allowed MUHs to operate in July of last year, Tecson said there has only been one incident where an ROF left the hotel and another tried to escape but was caught.
“The hotel was sanctioned for both incidents,” she said.
On December 30, the 2021 Department of Health and Tourism (DOH-DOT) Advisory Series No. 1 issued a stern warning against violating quarantine protocols and other minimum public health standards to all DOT accredited accommodation establishments operating under the alert level system.
“We had been very strict with our MUHs. We’re glad the DOH already issued a memo, but we were using our ordinance when they were challenged by those who defy protocols, ”Tecson said.
The joint advisory said all DOT-accredited accommodation facilities must adhere to the necessary testing and quarantine protocols of their guests, as prescribed by the Interagency Working Group for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases.
Therefore, “quarantined customers should be strictly monitored and should not be allowed to leave the hotel, leave its premises, or mingle with other customers until after their RT-PCR test (reaction reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction) negative or after authorization by the Quarantine Office (BOQ).
If quarantined guests test positive for Covid-19, management of quarantine hotels and DOT-accredited MUHs should coordinate with BOQ for contact tracing and their mandatory transfer to isolation facilities.
The DOH-DOT notice states that a person or entity committing acts prohibited under Republic Law 11332, or the Law on Mandatory Reporting of Notifiable Diseases and Health Events of Concern for the public health, and its implementing rules and regulations, will be fined at least PHP 20,000 but not more than PHP 50,000 or imprisonment for at least one month but not more than six months, or both this fine and this imprisonment, at the discretion of the competent court.
Likewise, the general manager, president, general manager or other managers of the accommodation establishment will also be held responsible. The establishment permit and the authorization to operate the failing establishment can also be canceled. (ANP)