COVID-19 Crisis: NCR cases growth rate spikes

As the Philippines recently registered its highest single-day number of new cases of COVID-19 in months, OCTA Research announced that it found the one-week growth rate in the National Capital Region (NCR) spiked to 71%, according to a GMA Network news report.

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the GMA news. Some parts in boldface…

The National Capital Region’s COVID-19 cases one-week growth rate climbed to 71%, independent group OCTA Research said Saturday.

The group said NCR’s “7-day average increased from 103 to 176 (as of June 11 to 17), a 71% increase.

This translates to an ADAR (average daily attack rate) of 1.24,” it added. ADAR pertains to the incidence showing the average number of new cases in a period per 100,000 people.

The NCR reported 282 new cases on June 17, 2022, based on DOH data. With the exception of April 3 (when there was a high number due to possible backlog), this is the highest number of new cases since February 26, 2022,” OCTA said.

The coronavirus reproduction number meanwhile also went up to 1.80 in NCR as of June 14, an increase over the 1.40 as of June 7. The reproduction rate refers to the number of people infected by one case. A reproduction number that is below 1 indicates that the transmission of the virus is slowing down.

Also climbing up is the positivity rate in the region, now at 3.7%. This refers to the percentage of people who were found positive for COVID-19 among the total number of individuals tested.

OCTA however noted that despite the rise in these metrics in NCR, the hospital bed utilization and ICU utilization rates are still low at 22% and 17%, respectively.

“So far, the numbers we are seeing have been in line with our projections: a weak surge and no escalation of alert levels or restrictions because we expect our healthcare system will be able to manage the relatively low number of hospitalizations,” the group said.

OCTA then reminded the public to be responsible, follow health protocols and get COVID-19 booster shots to prevent infection.

As seen above, the COVID-19 situation in Metro Manila is getting worse in terms of infections but not with hospital bed utilization and ICU utilization which have registered low rates respectively. There’s no need yet to move the alert level system up. Such upward adjustments will depend on the metrics of the IATF. As we have seen before, more restrictions mean serious economic damage.

Key solutions to preventing a surge of new COVID-19 infections include getting vaccinated/boosted, wearing face masks and following health protocols properly. Along the way, I urge you to never let the anti-vaccine fanatics around you to fool you with their propaganda and misinformation tactics. Those anti-vaccine fanatics are loud and they don’t really offer any solutions on dealing with COVID-19.

Ignore those anti-vaccine fanatics and get vaccinated or boosted whenever you have the opportunity to do so. Call your local vaccination site or the local authorities now to find if you are eligible for a vaccine shot or a booster shot. When traveling around, wear your mask and follow local health protocols to avoid infection. The national authorities, meanwhile, should move quickly to allow comorbid patients access to 2nd booster shots and make adjustments to improve access to vaccines and vaccination hubs.

Let me end this by asking you readers: Does the recent spike of COVID-19 infections in the NCR scare you? Could it be possible that some of those who recently got infected were victims of the misinformation tactics of the anti-vaccine fanatics in our country? If have been boosted already for COVID-19, have you made moves to find out if you are eligible for the 2nd booster shot?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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