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DOH says COVID surge by May if protocols aren’t met is just a projection

/ 03:51 PM April 19, 2022
The recent warning of a possible surge in COVID-19 cases by May if public compliance to minimum public health standards declines is only a projection and is not cast in stone, the Department of Health (DOH) stressed Tuesday.

DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire talks with reporters via Zoom meeting in this file photo taken on April 23, 2020. INQUIRER.net file photo / Daphne Galvez

MANILA, Philippines — The recent warning of a possible surge in COVID-19 cases by May if public compliance to minimum public health standards declines is only a projection and is not cast in stone, the Department of Health (DOH) stressed Tuesday.

The DOH is referring to its earlier warning that a 50-percent decrease in the compliance to minimum public health standards may lead to nearly “half a million” active infections in National Capital Region (NCR) by mid-May.

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“Gusto ko lang paaalalahanan ang lahat at ipaliwanag—these are projections. When we talk about projections, these are not cast in stone,” DOH Undersecretary Ma. Rosario Vergeire said in a press briefing.

(I just want to remind everyone that this is just a projection.)

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“Ibig sabihin, hindi natin alam kung ito ay mangyayari o kung ito ay hindi mangyayari. Ito ay ginagamit ng pamahalaan para maguide tayo sa pagpplano, at pagp-prepara at mag-inform at maguide ang ating mga kababayan [Meaning this may or may not happen. It is being used as guide so we can plan, prepare and inform our countrymen],” she added.

Vergeire explained that the projections are based on the risk factors present in the country. Among the risk factors include crowding and mass gatherings such as in campaign rallies ahead of the national elections.

The health official reminded Filipinos that a mass gathering being held outdoors does not guarantee safety, especially when there is crowding.

“Hindi din safe kahit outdoors tayo tapos dikit-dikit ang tao. Maaari pa ring magkaroon ng transmission ng infection dyan [Even in indoors it is not safe if we are crowded. Transmission of infection may happen],” Vergeire said.

Further, Vergeire pointed out that there were videos on social media showing individuals partying during the holidays without social distancing and wearing masks.

“These kinds of risk factors can contribute to the increase in cases. The projections include the assumption that if individuals, or the community or the population will have reduced compliance to minimum public health standards by about 30 to 50 percent, these kind of increase in cases will happen,” Vergeire said.

“It doesn’t have to be na parehong-pareho na 500,000 doon sa assumption. Hindi kailangan. Pero makita lang natin na tumataas ang kaso, indication na po yan na talagang may transmission na nangyari dahil yung mga risk factors ay nangyari,” she added.

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RELATED STORIES:

DOH warns of possible COVID-19 surge by May due to neglected health standards

WHO: 300K active COVID-19 cases in PH by May possible if health standards neglected

DOH: New COVID-19 cases in PH declining

JPV

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