TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan's Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) stated on Monday (July 19) that there is a high probability epidemic prevention restrictions will be lowered to Level 2 when they expire on July 26.
Health Minister and CECC head Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) that afternoon said it is "highly likely" that the Level 3 measures will be lowered to Level 2. Chen said the loosening of regulations will be implemented "slowly and steadily based on the four principles of gradual progress, proper planning, strengthened prevention, and adaptability."
Taiwan's positivity rate is now only 0.06%, a substantial drop from the 5.2% seen at the start of the outbreak in May. Chen on Sunday (July 18) said the key to lowering the alert level will not be zero cases, but rather the degree to which the outbreak is brought under control.
With the end of the current Level 3 alert only one week away, Chen was asked by reporters on Monday to elaborate on which epidemic prevention strategies will be implemented when the alert level is lowered. Chen responded by saying that the wearing of masks, social distancing, and washing of hands are "three items that are probably going to be with us for a long time."
Chen said the remaining regulations will be determined by local governments based on their own situations in terms of infections in the community.