CAGAYAN DE ORO

Herd immunity not a solution to coronavirus infection

Northern Mindanao Medical Center liaison officer Dr. Bernard Rocha on Wednesday, November 25, said that herd immunity is not a solution to address coronavirus infections in the city as proven by advanced countries who tried it and failed. (Screenshot from City Information Office video)

NORTHERN Mindanao Medical Center (NMMC) liaison officer Dr. Bernard Rocha on Wednesday, November 25, 2020, said herd immunity is not a solution to address coronavirus infections in Cagayan de Oro City as proven by advanced countries who tried it and failed.

"Kining mga herd immunity, you should take it with caution. Remember, there other countries who tried it and failed. Kanang herd immunity, nidaghan gyud ang kaso. So for me, is it a good strategy? We saw the evidence na it failed in other countries," Rocha said.

Rocha said herd immunity can be likened to the concept of "survival of the fittest," saying that Filipinos, culturally, do not adopt that kind of mindset as they tend to protect the vulnerable population such as the children and the elderlies.

"Would we rather go into that direction nga daghang mamatay and then bahala na? Or we try to follow what is recommended and maybe save more na ma-prevent nato matakdan ang mga vulnerable population," Rocha said.

City Epidemiologist Dr. Joselito Retuya, for his part, said for herd immunity to happen, 85 to 95 percent of the total population of Cagayan de Oro would have to be infected by the virus.

Retuya further said people think of herd immunity as a solution, especially since there are already strategies being implemented to address the increase number of coronavirus infections.

He added that while Covid-19 cases will definitely still increase due to continuing swab tests, most of them are mild cases or asymptomatic.

Acting City Health Officer Dr. Lorraine Nery echoed the two doctors' statements, saying that people should take into consideration the condition of the general population.

"That [Herd immunity] is very dangerous and atong i-mention, we have to take it with caution. We need to consider since the bulk of our mortality are those with comorbidities," Nery said.


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