DEPARTMENT of Health (DOH) Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said on Monday, September 20, that the peak of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) cases in the National Capital Region (NCR) has yet to be reached.
Vergeire said the peak of Covid-19 cases in the NCR may be reached by the end of September or early in October.
“When you say a peak, ito ‘yung pinaka mataas na numero na kaso na narereport in a certain period of time tapos pag peak siya, ineexpect mo pagkatapos noon tuloy-tuloy nang bababa ang mga kaso. Hindi pa masabi ngayon, pag-aralan pa dahil tuloy-tuloy pa din tumataas ang kaso. Dahil lang sa mga intervention that we did bumagal ang pag peak,” she said in a virtual press conference.
“This delayed peak may be due to a slowdown in the case increases brought on by implemented community quarantine restrictions, improvement of PDITR (Prevent-Detect-Isolate-Treat-Reintegrate), and vaccination, thereby leading to a longer period before we reach the said peak, but with markedly slower number of cases versus an early and steeper peak with a larger number of cases,” she added.
Vergeire made the statement in response to the report of the Octa research group that Covid-19 cases in NCR may have already peaked.
The Octa said the average new cases in NCR went down by 13 percent from 5,916 in the previous week to 5,319 from September 13 to 19.
It said the reproduction number also went down from 1.37 a week ago to 1.14, while the positivity rate fell from 25 percent to 23 percent.
“The indications are that the surge may have already peaked in the NCR, but the decrease in cases needs to be sustained before we can establish with certainty that cases have already peaked,” the group said.
“There may still be spikes in new cases in the NCR over the next week due to some reporting backlog, but unless the trends change, the daily average in new cases in the NCR should continue to decrease,” it added.
As of September 19, the DOH said there were a total of 178,196 active Covid-19 cases in the country.
The total confirmed cases reported was already 2,366,749, with 36,788 deaths and 2,151,765 recoveries.
Vergeire said the Philippines remains under high-risk classification due to the continuous increase in the number of Covid-19 cases.
She said that in the NCR plus areas, which include Cavite, Laguna, Rizal and Quezon, a slight downward trend of cases was recorded, while the rest of Luzon is at a continuous uptrend. Cases in Mindanao and Visayas, meanwhile, were plateauing. (SunStar Philippines)