Good news, bad news on trends and the data of 09.22.2021

It’s a Wednesday. And the data showed a few hundred cases lower on Wednesdays than Tuesdays for the past weeks. But that may also be due to slightly more tests done on a Monday.

With that, the Health Agency announces 15,592 new cases today. With more than 24,000 recoveries the active cases are still high at more than 162,000.

Total tests done last September 20 for the data today were 53,349. The positivity rate was at 24.9% (a tad lower than the average daily positive rate for the country).

There are 154 new deaths bringing the case fatality ratio for outcomes to 1.65%.

The NCR remained on the lower range for total cases with around 23% of the share for the day. Four regions continued to have quadruple digits, while all the rest except Eastern Visayas had triple digits for the day. Central Visayas continued its downward trend and is seeing much fewer cases.

Among provinces, Cavite is back in the lead with many of the provinces in Northern Luzon among the top ten with highest cases.

Twelve of 17 LGUs in NCR are among the top twenty cities/municipalities with most cases, while 5 LGUs from CALABARZON are in the list. Davao City and Baguio City are among the top 10.

OCTA MONITORING REPORT

Let’s start with the bad news.

It’s been awhile since OCTA came out with its monitoring report. And the update at the height of the latest surge is a colorful one in the shade of red. Except for the province of Cebu, all the other regions and provinces in the list below are either critical or high risk in terms of the indicators for ADAR (incidence rate), and positivity rate. The 7-day average growth rate in these areas are generally in a negative trend including the epicenter NCR. Major areas of concern are the provinces of Isabela, Cagayan, Benguet, Laguna and Bataan.

The good news is that the National Capital Region continues to see lower cases over the past two weeks and this is seen in the infographic prepared by Prof. Guido David below.

For the readers perspective, the graph shows the surge in March/April 2021 and that of August/September 2021. The weekly growth rate saw a correlation in the reproduction number. As the reproduction number decreased the cases declined as well. Unfortunately, we were not able to sustain the decline in reproduction number. Keeping R very low is vital in containing the virus. That is why if you look at the left side of the graph (weekly growth rate), the increase is much higher than the decrease. As the R began to climb, so did the number of cases.

It is the R that dictates how we are doing and when we should be worried. When the R saw an incline in the middle of July, this was an ominous sign. When the growth rate begins to increase, it will be difficult to bring it down especially with a positivity rate that is critically high.

The good news is the downtrend and the obviously declining R for the NCR. Cases will still be high, but are slowing down. We need to just bring it below 1.0 and if can maintain it at 0.5 in the next 60 days, this will be a good holiday season.

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