With 77,479 tests done on January 7 and a positivity rate of 44%, the Health Agency reports 28,707 new cases today as the active cases climb to more than 128,000. Majority of the active cases are mild. Hospital ward beds are now filled at 65% while ICU utilization is at 52%.
We will breach 3M COVID19 cases anytime soon (Monday or Tuesday). Because we are not counting those that test positive on Rapid Antigen Tests, our numbers are under counted. Hospital manpower is also down, which accounts for many hospitals not accepting patients for admission. In reality, because COVID19 is NOT a medical emergency, I would encourage people not to crowd the ER of the hospitals for COVID19 testing only.
There are 15 added deaths today.
NCR accounted for a little less than 59% of the cases today as the cases in the other regions are seeing a gradual rise. CALABARZON and Central Luzon continue the four digits run, while 10 other regions led by Bicol Region and Western Visayas. There are 91 ROFs (returning overseas foreigners) who tested positive as well.
Four provinces from CALABARZON and Central Luzon lead the provincial tally with four digits – Cavite, Bulacan, Rizal and Laguna.
As usual, it is Quezon City and the City of Manila that lead the LGUs and the national cases for the day. Thirteen of 17 LGUs are in the top 20 list, with the city of Calamba in Laguna rounding up the 20th spot with 263 cases, the fewest in the top 20 today.
THE WEEK IN REVIEW
That needle-rise in cases is being experienced globally. In less than 2 months since Omicron was reported by South Africa, the variant of concern has spread throughout the globe. And every nation is grappling with containing its spread. The balance of economy and healthcare now tips in a different direction. While many cases may be mild (due to vaccination status and reinfections), the number of cases has made it more difficult to manage as healthcare manpower is unduly affected. In short, while there are beds, there are not enough people to man the hospitals (and laboratories).
An overview of the past 7 day situation in the Philippines (January 1-7, 2022) shows how Omicron has affected the cases, tests, positivity and reproduction rate.
Comparing the cases to other countries within the region and Australia, the surge is insurmountable. All countries are seeing an uptick in cases (with Indonesia seeing only a minor rise). The Philippines jumps from 0.7 cases per million to 88 per million within a week span.
In the same countries above, while Australia has the most cases per capita, it is the distinction of the Philippines to own the highest reproduction rate. We need to bring the Rt down so that the cases stop the steep incline. That has been repetitively the goal of every surge.
Based on information from OCTA Fellow, Professor Guido David, here’s the march of how several LGUs in the NCR, Regions IVA and III have seen their cases grow.