COVID-19 drops out of top 10 causes of death in PH | Inquirer News

COVID-19 drops out of top 10 causes of death in PH

/ 05:32 AM January 26, 2023
Patients outside the emergency room of the Andres Bonifacio Memorial Medical Center in Manila. STORY: COVID-19 drops out of top 10 causes of death in PH

Patients outside the emergency room of the Andres Bonifacio Memorial Medical Center in Manila. (File photo by RICHARD A. REYES / Philippine Daily Inquirer)

MANILA, Philippines — After consistently being in the top 10 in 2021, COVID-19 has dropped to 11th place among the leading causes of death in the country, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

“This is good news for us,” Maria Rosario Vergeire, Department of Health (DOH) officer in charge, told reporters at a press briefing on Wednesday. “This signifies that… we are able to already prevent further deaths [due] to this disease.”

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Based on the latest PSA data released earlier this week, COVID-19 with “virus identified” was the 11th leading cause of death from January to September 2022, with 9,749 cases. This accounted for 2.3 percent of the death toll.

COVID-19 deaths with virus “not identified” ranked 19th, with 4,134 or 1 percent of total cases.

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The PSA classifies COVID-19 fatalities as “virus identified” if the cause of death was confirmed through a laboratory test. Those tagged as COVID “virus not identified” refer to probable or suspected cases.

The country saw the COVID-19 death count jump to its highest level two years ago when the coronavirus ranked third among the leading causes of death in 2021 at more than 74,000 deaths. At the time, Delta was the most virulent COVID-19 strain, causing record-high infections at a time when vaccines were not yet widely accessible to everyone.

“What is working for us right now would be our immunity—both the natural and from vaccines,” Vergeire said as she reiterated the need for the unvaccinated and others due for booster shots to get their COVID-19 doses.

Despite the decreasing threat posed by COVID-19, she warned against complacency, adding that “even a single death should be a concern.”

The country, she also noted, was slowly returning to the “old trends” of noncommunicable diseases, or chronic diseases caused by genetic factors or unhealthy behaviors becoming the leading cause of death among Filipinos.

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COVID-19 as 11th top cause of death shows PH is stopping further deaths – DOH

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TAGS: Department of Health, Maria Rosario Vergeire, PH COVID-19 cases, PH top 10 causes of death, Philippine Statistics Authority
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