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With reference to the interagency Joint Memorandum Circular No. 1 s. 2020 or the Streamlined Guidelines for the Issuance of Permits, Licenses, and Certificates for the construction of Shared Passive Telecommunications Tower Infrastructure (PTTI ) issued to streamline the process and hasten the construction of more cell site towers across the country, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) would like to reassure the public that prior to installation of antennas, an evaluation is done to determine its safety.

Cell sites, also known as mobile phone base stations, are required to enable mobile phone communications, calls, and data transfer between wireless telecommunication devices. According to the International Commission on Non-ionizing Radiation (ICNIRP), antennas installed in cell sites emit radiofrequency radiation (RFR), which at very high levels, can heat up body tissues. However, it is very unlikely that a person could be exposed to RFR levels greater than the limits specified by DOH Administrative Order No. 175 s. 2004. Antennas are installed high above cell site towers which ensure minimal exposure at the ground level.

The World Health Organization (WHO) states that there are no adverse effects from typical exposure to RFR produced by cell sites. ‘ Moreover, ICNIRP maintains that any adverse health effect arising from exposure to RFR is only possible at high powered/intensity exposures exceeding limits and safe distances in front of the antennas that are normally inaccessible to the public.2 These values are calculated by the FDA through the issuance of Certificates of Safety Evaluation (CSE) prior to the installation of cell site antennas.

For your guidance.

Attachment:-> FDA Advisory No.2020-1623