The highly contagious COVID-19 Delta variant is now present in 13 out of 17 regions in the Philippines according to the Department of Health (DOH).
DOH Undersecretary Rosette Vergeire said in a press briefing today, August 9, that there are now 450 confirmed Delta variant infections tin the country. Of the total, 426 have already recovered, with 10 deaths and 13 active cases. 35 of these individuals were fully vaccinated, 17 were vaccinated with the first dose, 83 were unvaccinated, and 315 are for verification.
Vergeire also said that as of August 5, the Delta variant has also been detected in all 17 areas of Metro Manila. Out of these 16 cities and one municipality, 10 are classified under Alert Level 4, which means that the areas have high healthcare utilization rates and/or have high case counts. These cities include Pateros, Malabon, Valenzuela, Marikina, Taguig, Quezon City, Makati, San Juan, Muntinlupa, and Las Piñas.
"As of August, 56% ang healthcare utilization rate (in NCR). Looking at it granularly, there are 236 facilities at the critical level, 25 of which are in the National Capital Region."
The DOH recommended that areas under high alert levels should implement granular lockdown, start active case finding, and address hospital capacity issues.
During the two-week enhanced community quarantine, Vergeire said there is a high possibility that cases will continue to increase.
"Projections have shown na ganito ang mangyayari pero ang ating hope, kaya we are doing our measures right now and preparing our local governments, is to delay the further rise in the number of cases so we will have more time to capacitate our systems," she said.
(Banner and thumbnail photo: Manila health workers screen participants in the on-going inoculation drive at the Holy Trinity Academy in Manila during the start of the 24/7 vaccination program of the local government on Sunday. Miguel De Guzman/The Philippine Star)