The better past week and the data for 10.24.2021

The Health Agency reports another 5K plus cases for the third consecutive day. Today, however, was at the lower spectrum of the predicted 5-6 range for the weekend with 5,279 new cases.

With more recoveries than cases, the active cases are a little above 60,000.

There were close to 53,000 tests done last October 22, with a 10.3% positivity rate.

There are 208 new deaths announced today. This brings the case fatality rate for outcomes to 1.55%. The gap between the case fatality rate of 1.52% by the Department of Health has narrowed (vs. the case fatality rate for outcomes using outcomes – recoveries and deaths as denominator instead of total cases) because the number of active cases have decreased.

ICU utilization rate in the National Capital Region is lower at 46% and overall hospitalization is less than 40%. ICU utilization rate nationally is at 53% as some regions are still struggling with higher cases compared to their health capacity. Hopefully, the tide turns around the last week of October.

NCR accounted for 19% of today’s total cases with 1,010 new cases. Its third straight day also of recording four digits. Cagayan Valley is in second spot, while Central Luzon in third. Except for BARMM and Eastern Visayas, all regions recorded triple digit cases.

On a provincial level, Isabela continued to lead. Pangasinan, Nueva Vizcaya and Cagayan are the provinces in Northern Luzon that are among the top 10 with most cases.

Among cities/municipalities, 11 of 17 LGUs in the top 20 list are from Mega Manila. In the top ten were five LGUs from NCR while the other five were outside of NCR. LGUs outside of Mega Manila in the top ten today are: Zamboanga City, Davao City, Lubang Island, Bacolod City and Baguio City.

THE WEEK IN REVIEW

The week saw continuing decline of cases in the Philippines from a 8,000 the previous week to 5,500 daily 7-day moving average. Notice the steep decline in cases after peaking in August/September. We are close to the pre-surge levels of May 2021 and hopefully can bring this down to the same levels as December of 2020, by December this this.

The 7-day death average is, however, relatively high at 145 relative to the large drop in cases.

Testing has declined as well, but notice that while the average tests are down to 50,000+, the positivity rate has also significantly dropped to 12.4%.

Among select Asian countries, the Philippines slipped to third place with a 7-day average down to 5,700 as of October 22. Enviably are Indonesia and Japan that are enjoying all time lows with triple digits. Indonesia recorded a 7-day average of around 800 daily cases, while Japan is below the 500 mark.

However, one must take into consideration the cases and deaths in relation to the POPULATION SIZE of the country. When this is factored in, Singapore, a country of less than 6M and is seeing a rise in COVID-19 cases in the tiny country in the equator is seeing the highest number of cases per capita (per million population). It has close to 600 cases/M while Indonesia, a country with close to 275M people has around 3 cases/M!

In terms of deaths, Malaysia and Singapore lead in deaths per capita, while the Philippines is in third spot. Vietnam, Indonesia and Japan have lower deaths per million population (<1/M) from COVID-19.

The reproduction number is declining in all countries in the region, except for Japan and Indonesia that saw a slight upward bump but are still way below the 1.0. Only Singapore has an effective rate >1.0 (1.10). The Philippines has a Rt ~ 0.7 (+/-0.05) as of October 18, 2021.

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