OCTA Research: Davao, Bacolod, Iloilo City have highest average new COVID-19 cases after NCR | Inquirer News
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OCTA Research: Davao, Bacolod, Iloilo City have highest average new COVID-19 cases after NCR

/ 09:25 PM June 22, 2021
OCTA Research: Davao, Bacolod, Iloilo City have highest average new COVID-19 cases after NCR

FILE PHOTO: This undated transmission electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2, also known as novel coronavirus, the virus that causes COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S. NIAID-RML/Handout via REUTERS.

MANILA, Philippines — The localities with the highest average COVID-19 cases from June 15 to 21 after the National Capital Region (NCR) are Davao City, Bacolod City, and Iloilo City — confirming observations that COVID-19 cases are spiking in Visayas and Mindanao.

Data released by analytics group OCTA Research on Tuesday showed that Davao registered an average of 246 COVID-19 cases per day — higher than numbers from the previous period, which was at 193.

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It represents a 28 percent increase in the average cases of the said city.

In areas outside of NCR with a high average of new COVID-19 cases, all but one came from either Visayas or Mindanao:

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Bacolod (114 average new cases per day)
Iloilo (88 average new cases per day)
Cagayan de Oro (79 average new cases per day)
General Santos (59 average new cases per day)
Baguio City (57 average new cases per day)
Cebu City (57 average new cases per day)
Tacloban (54 average new cases per day)
Zamboanga (54 average new cases per day)

Among those in the top ten in terms of average new cases, Cebu and Tacloban had the highest jump in percentage, at 35 percent and 34 percent, respectively. However, the largest percentage increase was recorded in Calumpit, Bulacan, with a 197 percent increase as infected patients swelled from nine to 27.

“Outside the NCR, the areas of concern include: Davao City, Bacolod, Iloilo City, Cagayan de Oro and Tacloban, although there were some welcome news as new cases had a decrease in some noted hotspots, e.g. Bacolod, Iloilo City, Cagayan de Oro, Dumaguete, Butuan,” OCTA Research said.

“High hospital bed occupancy (HBUR greater than 70%) was observed in: Iloilo City, Cagayan de Oro, Tuguegarao, Dasmariñas, Butuan, Tacloban, Roxas City and Polomolok (which was at critical level). ICUs were already at critical level (above 85% utilization) in Davao City, Iloilo City, Cagayan de Oro, General Santos, Tagum, Cotabato City, San Pablo, Koronadal, Batangas City and Santa Rosa,” it added.

The OCTA Research data coincided with observations made by the Department of Health (DOH) and its chief, Secretary Francisco Duque III, that the country’s COVID-19 case count has either increased or plateaued due to higher infections in Visayas and Mindanao — despite actual decreases in NCR and several areas in Luzon.

According to OCTA numbers, NCR averaged 700 cases from June 15 to 21.

READ: COVID-19 cases plateauing, but attack rate up in parts of Visayas, Mindanao 

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During President Rodrigo Duterte’s briefing on Monday, Duque reminded local government unit (LGU) heads in Visayas and Mindanao to intensify the implementation of protocols against COVID-19, as numbers indicate rising infections in the said areas.

Duque explained that while COVID-19 cases in the country are plateauing — even decreasing, from 6,600 two weeks before just 6,200 cases for last week — Visayas and Mindanao saw an increasing trend.

READ: Duque reminds Visayas, Mindanao execs to step up enforcement of COVID-19 protocols 

As early as June 7, Duque also clarified that the reason why COVID-19 cases in the country were still rising even if NCR numbers were dropping is that other areas in the country were also affected by outbreaks.

READ: Low NCR infections but higher COVID-19 cases? Duque says other areas also hit 

READ: Long-term programs, not just lockdowns, needed to fight COVID-19 surges – Duque 

The COVID-19 response of local governments was a hot topic recently, after Vice President Leni Robredo urged Davao City to look at the measures implemented by other areas to curb infections. However, Duterte’s daughter and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio took offense to Robredo’s statements, saying that the COVID-19 situation must not be used for political discussions.

Both Robredo and Duterte-Carpio are rumored to be running for the 2022 Presidential Elections.

READ: Robredo camp: No politics about citing facts on Davao City’s rising COVID-19 cases 

As of Tuesday, the country’s active COVID-19 infections dipped to 52,696, because of low new COVID-19 cases and a high recovery count. DOH, however, said that the low case count might not be immediately due to an actual lowering of cases but due to a low turnout of tests from laboratories since Sunday.

READ: High recovery, low new cases cut COVID-19 infection count to 52,696 

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