Duque says Covid-19 cases could reach 2,000 daily by end of July

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MANILA — The country’s health chief on Thursday stated that Covid-19 cases in Metro Manila could reach 2,000 per day by the end of July if people continue to ignore public health protocols and if booster uptake remains low.

According to Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, this was based on the Australian Tuberculosis Modelling Network (AuTuMN) projection.

In an interview with CNN Philippines, Duque stated that cases in the capital region could hit between 800 and 1,200 a day by the end of June.

“Pero by the end of July, pwedeng umabot ng 1,500 to 2,000 cases daily and after that magpa-plateau siya to below 1,000,” he said. 

Duque noted that this forecast was based on assumptions that included decline in people’s compliance with minimum public health standards, low uptake in COVID-19 booster shots, and the presence of fast-spreading Omicron subvariants with immune escape characteristics.

He reminded the people to get vaccinated and receive boosters when eligible.

More than 70 million people have completed vaccination against Covid-19. Only 14.7 million individuals, however, have acquired booster shots.

Earlier, the Department of Health stated that the country, especially Metro Manila, is seeing the start of another surge in Covid-19. The capital region, home to more than 13 million, is under the lowest alert level until the end of the month.

Duque expressed optimism that the country will be able to manage the resurgence of cases.

“We’re more agile now. We are more ready. We can manage this,” he said. “The virus will stay, it will remain. So we just have to manage this so the cases and the transmission are low, not enough to overwhelm and overstretch our healthcare system capacity.”

On Wednesday, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire reported that severe and critical cases only comprised about 11% of total admissions across the country.

House committees to hold hearings during break

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Spread the loveMANILA – The House of Representatives has authorized for its committees to conduct hearings during the five-week congressional break, extending until late April.