Published June 5, 2021 9:46pm

Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko” Moreno urged the government to divulge the “scientific basis” for the requirement that the public use face shields amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

“We cannot go on like this without proving to our people the scientific basis of any policy with health protocols,” Moreno said in an interview on ANC.

The mayor issued the remark after his proposal to stop the mandatory wearing of face shields outside homes was thumbed down by Health Secretary Francisco Duque III and other officials.

Moreno stressed that he witnessed firsthand the discomfort being experienced by the public due to the wearing of face shields.

“I believe sa pakiramdam ng tao, because kami ang kausap ng tao, kami ang nasa kalsada, kami ang nakakakita. Kami ang nakakaha ng data ng aksidente sa planta, aksidente sa bahay, and so on and so forth,” he said.

(I believe in what the public is feeling because we are the ones talking to the public, we are the ones on the streets, we are the ones who can see the situation. We’re the ones with data on accidents, accidents on the streets, accidents at home, and so on and so forth.)

“‘Yung discomfort is real. This is not imagination. There is discomfort. And respiratory problems will be agitated,” he added.

According to Moreno, all they were asking for was for experts to look into the matter.

“When you try to address and serve the people, you have to be receptive. ‘Yun lang naman ang hinihiling natin, aralin ng mga siyentipiko,” he said.

(When you try to address and serve the people, you have to be receptive. That’s all we’re asking for, for the experts to look into it.)

Duque previously said that mandatory use of face shields is science-based, citing a study published in the leading international medical journal The Lancet.

Meanwhile, OCTA Research fellow Ranjit Rye said they have yet to decide on a position as “more work and data is needed to assess this particular intervention.”

Rye, however, said that the efficacy and practicality of using face shields is a continuing discussion at the OCTA Research.

The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases made the use of face shields mandatory in December 2020. — Joahna Lei Casilao/DVM, GMA News