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PH average daily Covid cases drop 10% – OCTA

The Department of Health said it detected 10 more cases of the SARS-CoV-2 variant that originated in India, bringing the total in the Philippines to 12*

The country logged a seven-day average of 6,191 new Covid-19 cases — 10 percent lower than the previous week.

The latest monitoring report by OCTA Research released Saturday night said the figures covered the period May 9 to 15.

The National Capital Region topped the list with 1,644 new cases but the total dropped by 30 percent, followed by Cavite with a total of 330 new cases that is 20 percent lower than the previous period.

NCR had 1,855 new cases from May 5 to 11.

Laguna had 297 new cases and a 17 percent decrease, Bulacan’s 256 new infections were 5 percent lower, and Rizal tallied 238 new cases, a 29 percent decrease.

Among the NCR cities, Navotas had the fewest new cases at 16, down by 19 percent, and lowest average daily attack rate (ADAR) at 5.99.

Quezon City had the most new cases at 398 but still 25 percent lower than the previous week.

Taguig City tallied 88 new cases and the highest drop at 57 percent while the municipality of Pateros posted 22 new cases, 35 percent lower, and the highest ADAR at 32.35.

Over the same period, the country also logged 112 deaths per day.

Among provinces, Negros Occidental logged the most significant decrease in new cases at 43 percent. South Cotabato with 80 new cases recorded the highest increase at 54 percent.

Nueva Ecija, with 137 new cases, did not increase nor decrease its numbers.

In terms of positivity rate, all but one in the top 20 recorded between 12 (NCR and Pangasinan) to 27 (Quezon province) percent, except for Palawan which posted 67 percent.

Puerto Princesa, in particular, logged a 77-percent positivity rate.

OCTA’s data were obtained from the Department of Health Covid Data Drop.

INDIA VARIANT

The DOH on Saturday detected 10 more cases of the B.1.617 SARS-CoV-2 variant that originated in India, bringing the total in the Philippines to 12.

Of these 10 cases, one is a seafarer who came from Belgium, while the other nine are crew members of MV Athens Bridge.

The DOH said the seafarer disembarked in Belgium and flew back to Manila via the United Arab Emirates. He arrived in the Philippines on a flight on April 24, 2021 and completed his isolation period last May 13.

The other nine cases, on the other hand, were from the 12 Covid-positive Filipino crew of MV Athens Bridge. Four of them are still admitted at a hospital in Manila and are currently in stable condition while the other five are in an isolation facility.

“Samples of the other three RT-PCR-positive crew members were not eligible for sequencing. Likewise, these three crew members remain in an isolation facility,” the DOH said.

The 10 new cases were in addition to the two overseas Filipino workers from Oman and UAE, who were found positive for the B.1.617 variant.

The DOH said the two OFWs’ close contacts already completed the prescribed 14-day quarantine and have been discharged from their quarantine facility.

“Of the three initially reported Covid-19 positive cases that are close contacts of the 2nd case in the plane, one was sent for sequencing but was not detected to harbor a variant of concern,” it said.

OTHER VARIANTS

The DOH also detected 13 more B.1.1.7 (United Kingdom) variant cases, seven B.1.351 (South Africa) variant cases, and one P.3 (Philippines) variant case from the 37 samples sequenced on May 14.

The latest sequencing run included the samples from the crew members of the MV Athens Bridge, returning overseas Filipinos with relevant travel history, and deceased severe or critical Covid-19 cases.

Of the additional B.1.1.7 variant cases, three were ROFs and 10 were local cases. Based on the case line list, one has died while 12 have been tagged as recovered.

Two of the seven B.1.351 variant cases were ROFs, two local cases, and three currently being verified if they are local or ROF cases.

Two of the cases are still undergoing treatment, four have recovered, and one has died.

On the additional P.3 variant case, the DOH said the patient was a local case with an address in Region IX and has died on February 28.

The P.3 variant is not identified as a VOC but is currently under investigation to determine its public health implication.

“While the government is implementing stricter border control measures, the DOH urges the public to strictly adhere to the minimum public health standards and immediately get vaccinated when it’s their turn. By following these measures, infection and further mutation of Covid-19 can be prevented,” the DOH said.

It stressed that a low transmission rate means fewer chances for the virus to mutate.*PNA

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