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DOH says increase in COVID-19 cases in NCR now slowing down

By PhilSTAR L!fe Published Sep 20, 2021 6:53 pm Updated Sep 21, 2021 2:57 pm

The number of COVID-19 cases in the National Capital Region continues to increase although at a much slower prace compared to the previous weeks according to the Department of Health.

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergerie said in a Sep. 20 live briefing that the average number of cases for Sept. 13 to Sept. 19 has decreased by 13%, or 780 fewer cases, from the previous week.

“Our case data showed that cases in NCR continued to increase, but at a slower rate. This is evidence from the positive growth rates over the past month,” said Vergeire.

Vergeire also noted that infection rates in areas in the Visayas and Mindanao have also already hit a plateau.

OCTA Research also noted today that COVID-19 cases in NCR “may have peaked.”

Aside from the 13% decline in week-on-week cases, OCTA also said that NCR’s reproduction number, which refers to how many each infection may further infect, has decreased as well to 1.14 from 1.37 a week ago, moving close to 1, which indicates that cases are slowing down.

“The indications are that the surge may have already peaked in the NCR, but the decrease in cases needs to be sustained before we can establish with certainty that cases have already peaked,” OCTA said. 

“There may still be spikes in new cases in the NCR over the next week due to some reporting backlog, but unless the trends change, the daily average in new cases in the NCR should continue to decrease," OCTA added.

Vergeire, however, said that it has not yet been determined whether the peak infection rate has been hit already.

Vergeire has previously said that cases in the country may reach a peak of 42,000 daily infections if health interventions are not successfully implemented.

The DOH has logged 18,937 new COVID-19 cases on Sept. 20, of which 176,850 are active cases. Of the total active cases, 98.01% are asymptomatic to moderate cases while 2% are severe and critical cases. There are also 20,171 new recoveries and 146 new deaths recorded for Sep. 20. (with a report from Bert Lourence Ong)

(Thumbnail and banner photo:A barangay personnel wearing a full body personal protective equipment stands and awaits deliveries at a portion of H. Santos Street Brgy Tejeros corner J.P. Rizal in Makati City on Saturday, September 18, 2021. KJ Rosales / The Philippine STAR)