COVID-19 cases could peak by mid-February, says DOH

A health worker (R) walks past people queueing up for Coronavirus swab tests outside a gymnasium in Manila on January 7, 2022, as infections driven by the Omicron variant have tripled in the last two days in the nation’s capital. (Photo by AFP)


(Eagle News) — COVID-19 cases could peak by middle of February when the number of active cases could even double, according to Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire.

While there has been a slight slowing down in the doubling time of cases — from 2.2 days to four days — this does not mean that the cases have already peaked.

Nakikita po natin base sa mga projections po ng ating mga eksperto at saka iyong FASSSTER team natin, na patuloy pong tataas ang ating mga kaso. We are not seeing the peak of the cases yet, we are still yet to see the peak ‘no na baka po mangyari sa dulo po ng buwan na ito or even later, about second week of February at nakikita ho natin na maaari pang magdoble ang numero ng active cases natin compared to today by that time of February 15 po,” Vergeire said in recent Laging Handa press briefing.

She said that the National Capital Region (NCR) is averaging 17,124 cases per day, A week ago, it was around 6,500 cases.

“As we see our cases, the initial case doubling time po ng National Capital Region and even the whole Philippines, 2.2 days. Ibig sabihin, sa bawat araw po nagdodoble ang numero ng kaso, every two days nagdodoble po siya. Pero ngayon, humaba naman po ang doubling time, naging apat na araw naman po ngunit mataas pa rin ang pagpasok ng mga kaso,” noted Vergeire who also serves as Department of Health spokesperson.

The health department official had confirmed that there is already active community transmission of the Omicron variant in Metro Manila, and possibly even in the regions experiencing a spike in cases.

Because of the very high COVID-19 transmission, the DOH said that contact tracing is not a “priority intervention” as the infections are so high that it was hard to trace all contacts of a positive case.

Unang-una, ang atin pong very high transmission rate and high infection rate here in the National Capital Region warrants na hindi na po masyadong kailangan ng contact tracing dahil mas nauuna pa po ang impeksyon kaysa ma-trace po natin lahat ng contacts,” Vergeire said.

Aside from Metro Manila, Region 4-A and Region 3 are the regions with the highest number of new COVID-19 cases.

On Sunday, January 16, the total active cases reached 287,156 with the addition of 37,154 new cases.

(Eagle News Service)