Metro Manila, 5 other regions see rising COVID-19 cases
MANILA, Philippines — Metro Manila and five other regions in the country are seeing a reversal of COVID-19 case trend, recording positive growth rates of coronavirus cases in the last two weeks, the Department of Health (DOH) said Monday.
Aside from Metro Manila, the other regions are Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Central Visayas, and Northern Mindanao, according to Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire.
“Six regions have exhibited trend reversals. From a negative to a positive two-week growth rate, [they are] showing an increase in cases in these recent two weeks,” she told an online media briefing.
Meanwhile, Ilocos Region and Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) have been seeing positive growth rates of COVID-19 cases for six weeks now, said Vergeire.
Not a ‘surge’
Vergeire said the DOH is also monitoring the situation in Northern Mindanao and Davao Region because of their increasing utilization for intensive care units.
According to Vergeire, the country saw a one-percent increase in COVID-19 cases in the recent two weeks from July 11 to 24, as compared to the cases from June 27 to July 10.
She opted to not call the increase in cases being observed in some regions as a surge, but confirmed that clustering of cases has been found in communities in the six regions.
“I’d like to be clear na wag muna natin gamitin ang ‘surge.’ Ang surge, mayroong definition sa epidemiology which is not what is happening right now. Tumataas ang mga kaso. That, we can verify,” she explained.
(I’d like to be clear that we should not use the term “surge” for now. Surge has a definition in epidemiology which is not what is happening right now. Cases are increasing. That, we can verify.)
According to Vergeire, the COVID-19 reproduction number in the country is currently at 1.0059. Meanwhile, the reproduction number of COVID-19 cases is 1.009 in Metro Manila, 0.96 in CAR, 1.09 in Ilocos Region, 0.95 in Cagayan Valley, 1.12 in Central Luzon, 0.98 in Calabarzon, 1 in Central Visayas, 0.91 in Northern Mindanao, and 0.95 in Davao Region.
Reproduction number is the average number of cases estimated to stem from a single case in a given time. Vergeire, however, said that the DOH does not use reproduction number too often in its reporting because it is a “lagging indicator.” She said the department instead uses the average daily attack rate and two-week growth rate in determining the increase of cases in an area.
“If you will observe, we do not use reproduction rate that much. Kasi ang (It is because) reproduction rate is a lagging indicator. Ibig sabihin may time gap tayo (It means we have a time gap). Ang nakukuha na (The) onset of symptoms, that is two weeks before, so we are registering a transmission rate which is supposedly two weeks prior to this current date,” she explained.
The country has 54,262 active cases of COVID-19 as of Sunday.
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