DOH keeping tabs on post-holiday surge of COVID-19 cases until Jan. 15
MANILA, Philippines — Whether or not the Philippines is experiencing a post-holiday surge will be determined by January 15, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said Monday.
“Although napanatili na mababa ang bilang ng mga confirmed new cases on a daily basis, gaya ng inyong nireport, hindi pa po tayo puwedeng magsalita nang tapos dahil sa January 15 pa lang natin talaga malalaman kung ang inaasahang surge ay mangyayari o hindi,” Duque said in a televised briefing.
(Although we are keeping the number of confirmed new cases daily low, we cannot confirm yet if there is a surge because it is only on January 15 when we will find out if the expected surge is happening or not.)
Duque explained that Filipinos have not been consulting their doctors or volunteering to get tested as they celebrated the holiday season.
“Dahil nga itong nakaraan na mga holiday season, Christmas at itong New Year, ‘yung health-seeking behavior ng ating mga kababayan ay medyo hindi halintulad dati na mas nagpapatingin sa doctor, nagpapatest sa mga laboratoryo,” said Duque.
(Because of the recent holiday season, the Christmas and the New Year, the public’s health-seeking behavior is not the same as before where they are consulting their doctors and being tested in laboratories.)
“Dahil nga sa kanilang pagdiriwang, isinasabukas nang isinasabukas or isinasantabi ang kanilang consultation and testing. Kaya malinaw po, hangga’t dumating ang January 15, hindi pa po natin masasabi walang surge,” he added.
(Due to their celebrations, consultation and testing are being delayed or being set aside. That’s why it’s clear that as long as January 15 has yet to come, we can’t say that there’s no surge.)
Prior to the holiday season, President Rodrigo Duterte appealed to the public to skip festivities to avoid the spread of the coronavirus.
COVID-19 laboratories were also told to ready for a possible rise of demand in testing after the holidays.
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