UP prof says tighter restrictions could spare 70,000 people

MANILA. In this March 19, 2020 file photo, people, some wearing protective masks, rush to buy food before the Munoz market closes for its morning business as they cut their operations to four hours a day as part the enhanced community quarantine to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus in Manila, Philippines. (AP)

THE tighter quarantine restrictions imposed on Metro Manila and four provinces in Luzon until August 15, 2020 could bring down the projected number of coronavirus cases by the end of August.

University of the Philippines (UP) Professor Ranjit Singh Rye said the UP Covid-19 Pandemic Response Team had projected the total case count in the country to go up to 220,000 by the end of August.

But with Metro Manila and four provinces reverting to modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ), Rye said the number could go down by 50,000 to 70,000.

“‘Yung bagong forecast po natin ay 220,000 kung naka GCQ lang tayo, sa end of August. Ngayon na naka MECQ tayo, we will say, a little more than 50,000 ‘yung cases. Iyon ho ay projection lang namin, ‘yun ay malaking implication ng MECQ,” the professor said.

“Dahil nag MECQ tayo magiging 50,000 to 70,000 ang bagsak po, minus doon sa mga bagong kaso, so malaki po ang impact noong MECQ,” he said.

Under MECQ from August 4 to 15 are Metro Manila and the provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal.

Rye said compliance with the protocols set by the government and the private sector will reduce the reproduction number for coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

“Kung magtutulungan tayo, ang taong-bayan, ang private sector, ang gobyerno, na mapa-igting ang T3 (test, tracing, treatment) mas mataas pa ang kasong ma s-save natin,” he said.

He said the reproduction number, or the number of people who contract the virus from an infected person, could go down to one from the current 1.5. (Jove Moya/SunStar Philippines)


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