Department of Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said Saturday , August 7, Covid-19 cases in Metro Manila will continue to rise even if the region implements higher community quarantine classifications.
Citing initial forecasts from experts, Vergeire said cases would still reach about 18,000 next month with Metro Manila placed under Enhance Community Quarantine (ECQ).
The figure could go higher if the region is under the less stringent General Community Quarantine (GCQ), said the health official.
The Inter-AgencyTask Force (IATF) onCovid-19 has declared Metro manila under ECQ from August 6 to 20 amid a continuing spike in coronavirus cases.
Vergeire said the current spike in cases is likely driven by the more transmissible Delta variant in the Philippines.
“Naipa-update natin itong projections. If we do GCQ-HR for one week and five weeks ECQ, puwede tayong magkaroon ng 15,000 active cases by the end of September (We were able to update the projections. If we do GCQ-HR for one week and five weeks ECQ, we could get 15,000 active cases by the end of September),” she said in a Laging Handa briefing.
“So looking at our projections, makikita natin na kahit tayo ay magsasagawa nitong paghihigpit ng ating mga community quarantine classifications, we will still see the rise in the number of cases pero ang pinaka-importante kung masasabayan natin ng pagpre-prepare ng ating sistema at magbabakuna ng mas madami ang hope natin ay walang masyadong magiging severe infections (We could see that even if we impose tougher classifications, we will still see a rise in the number of cases but the most important thing here is to prepare our system and vaccinate more people in the hope of having fewer severe infections),” she said.
The National Task Force (NTF) against Covid-19 and Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging and Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) have activated a crisis action plan to effectively contain and mitigate the highly transmissible Covid-19 strains.
“Itong ginagawa natin ngayong paghihigpit ng mga classifications ang ating adhikain diyan is to delay further increase pero hindi niyan patitigilin, tutuloy pa rin ang pagtaas. Ang ating ginagawa ngayon is to prepare our system for this continuous increase in the number of cases (What we’re aiming with the implementation of stricter community quarantine classifications is to delay further the increase but it will not stop the spike. What we’re doing now is prepare our system),” she added.