Camiguin rolls out pandemic response playbook

October 5, 2021

Amid the Covid-19 pandemic, Camiguin province launched recently its own “pandemic response playbook” as it is poised to gradually reopen its tourism industry.

As one of the provinces with the least number of Covid-19 cases, Camiguin has been preparing for the reopening of its tourist destinations once the national government decides to allow the tourism industry to fully resume operations, according to Gov. Jurdin Jesus Romualdo.

Romualdo noted that the country’s tourism sector has been suffering from the imposition of quarantine protocols that resulted in the closure of resorts and other tourism-related establishments all over the Philippines.

Before the pandemic, the governor recalled that Camiguin is one of the country’s destinations that enjoyed a high number of tourist traffic due to its diverse attractions.

According to Romualdo, the provincial government has established “effective recovery protocols and developed meaningful action plans that optimize a holistic approach in its recovery efforts, way ahead of any reopening plans”.

“Our banner program on sustainable and responsible tourism proves most relevant today as we prepare to gradually reopen our doors to visitors in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic,” Romualdo said.

The governor was referring to the 94-page Clean Camiguin Pandemic Response Playbook 2020 — a compilation of essential health protocols to contain Covid-19.

The Clean Camiguin is “a guidebook for a safe, responsive, adaptable, ready, responsible, and hopeful Camiguin,” Romualdo said.

He said the handbook aims to illustrate how the province intends “to manage tourism as it braves forward in these challenging times, short of any date to open its doors to tourists”.

The playbook consists of protocols on public safety, response actions to follow the national mandate to “test, trace, treat,” adaptive measures and tourism new norms, as well as public access procedures.

It also contains guidelines for tourism-related establishments issued by the Department of Tourism, as well as a “roadmap to a clean, resilient and sustainable destination”.

Romualdo said the playbook also aims to provide direction and guidance to host communities, business stakeholders, national and local government leaders, and tourists.

“We are carefully striking a balance between health, economic, and environmental concerns. This is to ensure that our transition into the new normal becomes the heart of a long-term vision in keeping the island resilient towards global risks such as over-tourism, climate change, and health emergencies,” he added.