Monday, June 14, 2021

Covid-19 cases fall to lowest in nearly 2 months

MANILA. Rubber gloves hang on a cubicle used at a Covid-19 testing site to curb the spread of the coronavirus in Quezon City on April 29, 2021. (AP)

AS TESTING output remained low, the number of new coronavirus infections fell below 5,000 in a day for the first time in nearly two months.

The Department of Health (DOH) on Tuesday, May 11, 2021, reported 4,734 new cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), the lowest since the 4,387 on March 17, 2021.

The daily positivity rate also went down to 12.2 percent, the lowest since March 16. But there were only 32,205 samples tested on May 9.

The daily death toll, at 59, was the lowest in a little more than a month. These raised the death toll to 18,620. The case fatality rate remained at 1.67 percent.

The new cases increased the cumulative case count to 1,113,547.

There were 7,837 recoveries, pushing the number of active cases down to 56,752, or 5.1 percent of the total count.

In his report to President Rodrigo Duterte Monday evening, May 10, DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III said transmission has slowed down nationwide as indicated by a -22 percent two-week growth rate in new cases and a lower average daily attack rate of 6.85 per 100,000 population.

In the National Capital Region (NCR), epicenter of the Covid-19 epidemic in the country, the two-week growth rate declined to -39 percent while the average daily attack rate has dropped to 19.02 from a high of 30.98 per 100,000 population.

Duque said, however, that 10 regions continued to post positive two-week growth rates.

These are Mimaropa, Bicol, Western Visayas, Eastern Visayas, Zamboanga Peninsula, Northern Mindanao, Davao, Soccsksargen, Bangsamoro and Caraga.

“This means that Covid-19 transmission is faster in these regions,” Duque said.

Five regions continue to have high average daily attack rates. These are NCR, Cordillera, Cagayan Valley, Calabarzon and Central Luzon.

He emphasized, however, that there has been a significant decline in the attack rate in the NCR.

New cases from the NCR now account for about 31 percent of the total cases daily from the previous 48 percent.

Duque also reported that the healthcare utilization rate has continued to decline.

At the peak of the second surge in late March and early April, he said isolation beds were 51 percent occupied nationwide. Occupancy has gone down to 43 percent.

For ward beds, occupancy has decreased to 49 percent from 57 percent, while for intensive care unit (ICU) beds, utilization went down to 61 percent from 68 percent.

Only 40 percent, from the previous 48 percent, of mechanical ventilators nationwide were in use.

Some cities in the NCR, however, remained at high risk with critical healthcare utilization rates, Duque said. (Marites Villamor-Ilano / SunStar Philippines)


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