“The 2019 Plague” Day 273
MANILA, Philippines — The coronavirus disease pandemic is far from over even with the apparent “flattening of the curve” of new cases in the country, an expert from the University of the Philippines said.
In an interview with “The Chiefs” on One News/TV5 on Wednesday, mathematics professor Guido David urged the public to maintain the momentum to prevent a resurgence of cases.
“The truth is we’re already seeing the flattening, but we were just being a bit more conservative (when we said that we will see it) by the end of the month,” said David, a member of the OCTA Research team that regularly releases projections on the pandemic.
“I have to caution our viewers that flattening does not mean that the pandemic is over. It’s just the start of the recovery period,” he stressed.
David said it would take several months to bring down the average of new cases in the country, particularly in Metro Manila where most cases are reported.
He warned against the possibility of reversing the decreasing trend if containment measures are not sustained.
“This is just the start of the recovery period, it take us a while to get down… to 1,000 cases,” he said. “We have to remain cautious and be on the conservative side of this pandemic… We should try to maintain this momentum.”
Citing the case of Cebu, the UP professor said he is optimistic that the decreasing trend would continue despite the easing of the modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) in Metro Manila last week.
“In Cebu they relaxed to GCQ (general community quarantine) and they were able to continue the trend,” he said. “(But) we have to be on the alert to make sure that we can immediately make changes if some things are not working.”
Last week, the OCTA Research group warned that the number of cases in the country may reach 230,000 by the end of August if Metro Manila and nearby provinces revert back to GCQ after just two weeks of MECQ implementation.
The Department of Health reported 3,249 new cases yesterday, bringing the total to 205,581. Half the number already recovered from the deadly infection.
Based on DOH data, 566 additional recoveries brought to 133,990 the total number of COVID-19 patients who got well.
National Capital Region (NCR) still accounted for the biggest number of newly reported cases with 1,180, followed by the Calabarzon with 515. Repatriates posted 253 or 10 percent of the total newly recorded cases.
The DOH also reported 97 additional deaths, bringing to 3,234 the total number of COVID-related deaths. Most or 51 of the newly reported deaths occurred in July while 40 happened in August. The case fatality ratio is at 1.57 percent, which is lower than the global average of 3.36 percent. – Mayen Jaymalin
Janvic Mateo -The Philippine Star
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