Early stages of COVID-19 surge has started in NCR — OCTA
MANILA, Philippines — A surge of COVID-19 cases “in its early stages” has started in Metro Manila, OCTA Research said Thursday as it called for urgent response from the government to reverse the trend in cases.
OCTA Research said the uptick in coronavirus infections in Metro Manila should not be underestimated because it may already be driven by the highly transmissible Delta variant. The group earlier reported that the average number of new daily cases in Metro Manila was 813 from July 15 to 21, 27 percent higher compared to 638 in the previous week.
“The OCTA research group believes that a surge in its early stages has started in the NCR. OCTA believes that an urgent and decisive response from the national government and the LGUs is needed to reverse the growing trend in cases,” the independent research group said in a statement.
“At the very least, the IATF must contemplate a stricter quarantine status or impose more restrictions in the NCR,” said OCTA. “The current GCQ status without restrictions will not be enough.”
OCTA stressed that timely and appropriate interventions that would include lockdowns augmented by expanded testing and contact tracing should be in place to deal with the “impending surge” in Metro Manila.
The researchers also noted that the delay in government response led to the deadly surge of COVID-19 cases last March.
“Lets us learn from the lessons of other countries where effective control of the epidemic was lost because institutions acted too little and too late. If Delta is driving this surge, we need to crush it with lockdowns (localized and regional) and with expanded testing and tracing before it explodes and creates a catastrophic surge,” the group emphasized.
“Let us not wait for the numbers to explode before we act… We have a window of opportunity to reverse this surge. Let us act decisively and collectively. We need to act now,” OCTA added.
The country has so far confirmed a total of 47 cases of the Delta variant that was first detected in India and is being blamed for the surge in cases in many nations. Of this number, 23 were detected locally and the rest are from returning overseas Filipinos. Eight cases are still active.
As of Wednesday, the country has 47,996 active cases of COVID-19, including 6,560 additional cases. The DOH tracker showed that Metro Manila currently has 8,212 active COVID-19 cases.
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