Tuesday, November 30, 2021

DOH Says Covid-19 Spread Slows Down; PH Still High Risk

DOH Says Covid-19 Spread Slows Down; PH Still High Risk

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The increase in coronavirus infections appear to be slowing but the country’s health systems capacity remains at high risk, a health official said Monday.

Speaking at an online media forum, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said cases may still continue to increase in the next week due to the higher transmissibility of the Delta coronavirus variant and active case finding.

Citing the number of infections recorded from Sept. 13-19, Vergeire said the week recorded about 19,963 cases per day, a decrease of 5 percent from the previous week at 20,950.

“Looking at our epidemic curve, we see a new peak every week since the start of August. The average of cases in the recent week is twice as much as the average of cases we saw during the peak in April,” Vergeire said.

The top five regions with the most number of new cases are the National Capital Region (NCR), Region 4-A (Calabarzon), Region 3, Region 11 and Region 1.

Meantime, the top five areas with the most number of new cases are Quezon City, the provinces of Cavite, Laguna, Bulacan and Rizal.

“The NCR Plus areas showed a steep increase in cases in the end of July. In the recent week, slight downward trend is seen and the rest of Luzon continue to show an increase while Visayas and Mindanao show a plateau in the increase of number of cases,” Vergeire said.

The nation’s two-week growth rate is a positive 18 percent and an average daily attack rate of 18.56 cases for every 100,000 population.

In the NCR, the seven-day moving average shows a slight decrease as cases in the recent seven days decreased by 780 cases compared to the prior week.

“The whole of the NCR is at Alert Level 4 now. Our case data shows that cases in NCR continued to increase but at a slower rate and this is evidenced by a positive growth rate in the past month and as of Sept. 19, our two-week growth rate is at 17 percent, lower but still positive compared to that of two weeks ago at 32 percent,” Vergeire said.

Previous case projections estimated the peak of the daily cases in the NCR to occur towards the end of September or early October.

The delayed peak in cases may be due to the slowdown in increase in cases brought by the community quarantine restrictions, improvement of the PDITR strategy and vaccination, Vergeire said.

“These estimates may differ from the previously we noted probably because of the compliance to public health standards, lower mobility and vaccine coverage is higher than what was assumed and included in our projections,” she said.

Since the last week of July, Covid-19 deaths have been increasing, with the new peak recorded in mid-August.

The current numbers of deaths are expected to increase specifically in Regions 3, 4-A (Calabarzon) and 7.

“The average deaths per day for August 2021 is at 155 and this has exceeded the deaths in April 2021,” Vergeire said.

As of Sept. 19, the nation’s total number of cases since the start of the pandemic has climbed to 2,366,749.

The health department also tallied 19,271 new confirmed cases, bringing the total number of active cases to 178,196 or 7.5 percent of all cases. (PNA)

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