‘May pandemya pa rin’: Reminders from doctors, concerned Pinoys amid uptick in COVID cases

June 14, 2022 - 4:55 PM
People wearing face mask as protection against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) visit Manila Zoo, which serves as vaccination site, in Manila, Philippines, January 19, 2022. (Reuters/Lisa Marie David)

Some doctors and other concerned citizens reminded their fellow Filipinos of the still ongoing COVID-19 pandemic following an uptick in the weekly tally of COVID-19 cases.

The Department of Health on June 13 reported a daily average of 240 COVID-19 cases from June 6 to 12.

Overall, there were 1,682 additional COVID-19 cases for that week. Of these, eight patients were considered critical.

This translates to a 30.4% increase in COVID-19 infections from the previous week (May 30 to June 5).

Moreover, five deaths were also logged in the same period, thus adding up to 60,461 total COVID-19 deaths.

COVID-19 weekly case bulletin from the Department of Health (June 6 to June 12)

According to DOH’s tracker, 386 more cases were recorded on June 13, bringing the total COVID-19 cases to 3,693,608. Active COVID-19 cases also rose to 3,097.

The top regions with the highest spikes in new COVID-19 cases are as follows:

  • National Capital Region
  • Central Luzon
  • Western Visayas
  • Central Visayas

COVID-19 still exists

Data analyst Edson Guido said on Twitter that the data on active COVID-19 cases is the highest since a month ago or on May 13.

“The number of active cases is back to over 3,000 and is the highest since last month (May 13). The positivity rate on June 12 is 2.2%,” Guido said. 

In a separate tweet, he also juxtaposed the current healthcare utilization rates with the data last June 5.

Despite the uptick, he said these numbers are still in the “safe zone.”

“We’re seeing an increase but the numbers are still in the safe zone,” Guido tweeted with a prayer emoji.

Some doctors and Twitter users, meanwhile, reminded fellow Filipinos of the need to wear masks properly, get vaccinated and boosted.

“Wear face masks and get boosted!” said physician Tony Leachon, former special adviser to the National Task Force Against COVID-19.

“Keeping a close eye on this…High-quality masks pa rin please. Ingat ang lahat. Mindfulness na may pandemya pa rin. Let’s hold the authorities accountable for enabling the minimum public health standards, and get your COVID-19 shots/boosters as soon as they are available to you,” a doctor named Paolo Medina said.

“If you’re eligible for a booster dose, now is an excellent time to get it,” one user tweeted.

Another doctor with the Twitter handles @docbenjisays renewed the call to retain the work-from-home setup until COVID numbers go down.

“I would strongly recommend that those offices that still have WFH arrangements, maintain that in the meantime. Let’s help make the cases ease down for a month or two. No rush in bringing everyone back as NCR sees a slight uptick,” he said.

One user lamented that July and August are graduation season and the gradual return of face-to-face classes.

“Grabe. We really should’ve thought of long-term solutions before we collectively relaxed. Face-to-face and graduation season pa naman ang July and August,” the user said.

Talks on implementation of Alert Level 2

In a previous interview with ABS-CBN’s TeleRadyo, Health Undersecretary Dr. Maria Rosario Vergeire said that it is possible to raise the COVID-19 alert status of Metro Manila to 2 if hospital admissions will significantly increase.

“Kung magtutuloy-tuloy po ang mga kaso, siyempre makakakita tayo rin ng patuloy na pagtaas at baka yung admissions natin sa ospital ay tumaas. And therefore ‘pag ganyan ang nangyari, magshi-shift tayo and mag-e-escalate sa Alert Level 2 natin,” Vergeire said.

The health official added that the current approach is “learning to live with the virus.”

“The possibility would always be there, ‘pag nagtuloy-tuloy po ang mga kaso. Pero ang kailangan pong maintindihan ng ating mga kababayan, we are learning to live with the virus,” Vergeire said.