ON NOVEMBER 25, 2021, Davao Region recorded 19 new Covid-19 cases, which may have been the lowest number of new cases recorded in a single day since the year started.

The positivity rate is also at 2 percent wherein only 19 of the 1,062 specimens tested positive for Sars-CoV-2, the virus causing the Covid-19.

However, it should be noted that only eight of the 14 laboratories in the region were able to submit their data to the Department of Health in Davao Region (DOH-Davao).

Meanwhile, active cases in the region have continued to decrease. As of November 25, 2021, active cases are now at 1,045. Davao del Norte has the highest number of active cases at 298, followed by Davao de Oro at 287, Davao City at 198, Davao del Sur at 168, Davao Occidental at 64, and Davao Oriengal at 30.

Active cases now comprise only one percent of the total Covid-19 cases in the region, which is at 104,065. Recoveries are also high at 99,230 or 95.4 percent of the total cases. However, deaths due or related to Covid-19 are at 3,790 or 3.6 percent of the total cases. Deaths in the region are higher than the national death rate of 1.69 percent.

The drop in active cases is also observed at the local level, Davao City Covid-19 Task Force Spokesperson Dr. Michelle Schlosser said on November 26 that 136 barangays in the city have not recorded any new Covid-19 case from November 14 to 20.

Meanwhile, amid online claims that there has been an increase in pediatric cases, the Southern Philippines Medical Center assured that pediatric cases in the hospital are low.

“Gi-verify namo. Walay surge. Walay increase. Zero admission. Matingala mi asa ni gikan na impormasyon (We verified it, there is no surge. There is no increase in cases. In short, zero admission. We wondered where that information came from),” Dr. Ricardo Audan, SPMC chief, said.

Data from SPMC showed that active pediatric cases from November 24 to 25 are only 13. Of this number, nine are admitted at the hospital's Covid-19 wards, wherein two patients have mild symptoms, and seven are moderate. The other four are admitted at the temporary treatment and monitoring facilities (TTMFs).

It is a relief to see the drop in Covid-19 cases in the last few months. It goes to show that measures that have been put in place -- like the minimum health standards, contact tracing, targeted testing, quarantine, and vaccination roll-out, among others -- have helped manage the spread of Covid-19 in the region.

However, there is no room for complacency. Other countries are starting to see another surge of Covid-19 cases and it is highly possible that the Philippines could experience another surge soon. Both health experts and the local government unit have acknowledged the possibility of another surge after the holidays.

Therefore, it is important that we remain vigilant and disciplined enough in following minimum health protocols. It is through these simple actions that we can keep the gains we made. Let's not be complacent even if we are nearing the end of this tunnel.