Tuesday's low COVID-19 cases not sign of downward trend, says Duque | Inquirer News
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Tuesday’s low COVID-19 cases not sign of downward trend, says Duque

/ 11:30 AM January 12, 2022
Duque low COVID-19 cases not sign of decline

FILE PHOTO: Health Secretary Francisco Duque III gives his report on the COVID-19 situation during the taped briefing with President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday, May 26, 2021. (Photo from an RTVM video posted on Facebook)

MANILA, Philippines — The lower number of new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday does not indicate a downward trend in the number of coronavirus infections, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said Wednesday.

Duque noted that the 28,007 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday were mostly from tests conducted on Sunday when lower testing output is expected.

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“Premature,” Duque said during the weekly Kapihan sa Manila Bay forum, when asked if the country has already reached the peak of cases on Monday following the lower cases on Tuesday.

“Kaya lang naman mababa ‘yan, tandaan natin, galing ‘yan sa Sunday testing output. Usually Sunday, mababa ang testing output. ‘Yung iba, sarado tapos of course ‘yung iba maraming nag-isolate dahil may symptoms, ‘yung iba nagquarantine because na-exposed,” he said.

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(The cases are low because they came from the testing output on Sunday. Usually on Sundays, the testing output is lower. Other laboratories are closed, and their workers isolate themselves due to symptoms or quarantine because of exposure.)

“This is not an indication that the peak is over. We might still be in the acceleration phase of our surge but of course, we are doing our best to hopefully contain this as soon as possible and then mag-decelerate na kaagad (immediately),” he added.

Duque noted that in South Africa, cases due to the Omicron variant increased for four weeks and later immediately decreased.

“Like what happened in South Africa. Mabilis tumaas, mabilis bumaba. Four weeks lang iyon (It increased fast and decreased fast also. That’s just four weeks). I hope we follow the same trend or pattern, but I cannot say for now whether it’s the beginning of a downtrend,” he said.

The 28,007 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday were lower than the record-high 33,169 infections on Monday.

However, the DOH reported on Tuesday a positivity rate of 44.5 percent out of 58,409 individuals who got tested for coronavirus on Sunday. Meanwhile, the 46 percent positivity rate reported on Monday was from 73,234 tests on Saturday.

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire earlier said that COVID-19 cases may reach their peak by the end of January and that cases will slowly decline once they hit their peak.

/MUF

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TAGS: coronavirus Philippines, COVID-19, Department of Health, DoH, Omicron, Omicron variant
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