Friday, August 06, 2021

Cebu City developing ‘herd immunity’ from Covid-19

(File photo)

CEBU City is developing ‘herd immunity’ from Covid-19 as Central Visayas is seen to have flattened the epidemiological curve.

This was the observation of Dr. Jaime Bernadas, regional director of the Department of Health Center for Health Development in Region 7, during the Mugstoria Ta online talk show aired on the Facebook page of the Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas.

Bernadas cited the results from the surveillance testing using anti-body tests on the vendors at the Carbon Market conducted by the DOH and Cebu City Emergency Operations Center.

He disclosed that 47.48 percent of the 2,191 Carbon market vendors or 1,047 tested IgG positive. This indicates that they were asymptomatic and had already recovered from active infection of the virus.

“This is very significant because more and more people have now responded to the exposure of the virus, which means we are on the road to achieving ‘herd immunity,’” Bernadas said.

Herd immunity can be achieved if 70 to 80 percent of the community has been exposed to the virus and developed immunity, he explained.

On the other hand, 63 vendors yielded IgM positive results but when they underwent PCR tests, only 33 samples were found positive.

He said all the 63 vendors with IgM positive results, including the 33 with positive PCR results, were isolated as they may still transmit the virus.

He also noted that Central Visayas has flattened the curve. “Our Covid situation in Central Visayas and Cebu City has really improved a lot from being the hotspot to the better-managed pandemic in the entire country, if not the best,” Bernadas said.

As of October 12, the total number of Covid-19 cases in Central Visayas is at 22,671 with a total recovery of 20,309 and with active cases at 1,008.

“It means we are already on the verge of going down to almost less than a thousand cases and on a downward trend, which is a welcome development. And hopefully, this trend continues,” Bernadas added.

Statistics showed that from the end of July to October 12, the number of Covid-19 cases has been decreasing significantly, he said.

Since the start of September, the Covid-19 curve has flattened for nearly six weeks now, Bernadas said.

Meanwhile, Cebu City is among the areas in the region that has shown major improvement.

“Once tag as the epicenter of Covid-19, Cebu City has significantly brought down its Covid-19 cases daily, from 13 deaths per day three weeks ago to zero deaths as of October 12,” according to Cebu City councilor Joel Garganera who is also the deputy chief implementor of the City’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) for Covid-19.

“Today, 41 of 80 barangays in the City have zero Covid-19 cases for the last 14 days,” Garganera said.

He added that in the last few days, the city’s Covid-19 cases have been on a single-digit to zero cases, which is a far cry from three months ago.

“By June, we had the most number deaths at 370; by July we had 180 deaths; August with 22, September with 17 deaths and for the first 10 days of October, no reported deaths,” Garganera said.

Bernadas pointed at the continued massive testing, contact tracing, and strict implementation of health protocols and the coordinated efforts of the government and the private sector as the key factors in the successful management of the Covid-19 crisis in Central Visayas.

However, both Bernadas and Garganera agreed that this should not be reason enough to be complacent.

“Remember that as long as there is Covid-19 and no vaccine at hand, everything is still fragile and anything can still happen, let us remain vigilant in our daily activities,” Bernadas added. (PR)


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