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Phl Now Low Risk For COVID – DOH

Phl Now Low Risk For COVID – DOH
Photo taken by The Philippine STAR’s Michael Varcas on Aug. 24, 2021 shows a mall in Antipolo City implementing social distancing and other health and safety protocols for customers amid the continuing COVID-19 pandemic.

With declining COVID-19 cases, the country is now at “low risk” classification for the pandemic, the Department of Health (DOH) reported on Monday, Oct. 25.

At a press briefing, DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire noted that nationally, the classification for COVID-19 cases is now at low risk.

“We are not saying that we are out of the woods. What we are saying is a matter of fact and based on the monitoring of data we have right now. But we are not saying that we have no more problems,” she said.

She underscored the need to sustain the downward trend, especially with the prospect of higher risk in the coming holidays.

Vergeire said the low classification is due to the “negative” two-week growth rate of COVID-19, which is pegged at -48% and the “moderate” daily attack rate of 5.89 cases for every 100,000 individuals.

The national health system capacity is also now at moderate risk with the ICU utilization rate at 63.16%, bed utilization rate at 41.15% and mechanical ventilator utilization at 37.66, as of Oct. 23.

Data also show no region at high-risk classification.

Categorized under moderate risk are Regions 2, 9, Cordillera Administrative Region, 4B, 1 and the National Capital Region. The rest of the regions are at low risk classification.

Vergeire has urged the public to strictly comply with the minimum public health standards to prevent cases from rising again.

She also asked national agencies and local government units to strictly implement health and safety protocols, otherwise the country may see another surge in cases.

The official also added that vaccination must be ramped up to protect the vulnerable population, especially senior citizens and people with comorbidities.

Dr. Maricar Limpin, president of the Philippine College of Physicians, told “‘Wag Po!” on One PH on Monday night that people should not let their guard down because the virus is still here.

She noted that people tend to relax whenever restrictions are eased and health workers are worried that this might lead to rise in cases anew.

Limpin reminded the public to protect themselves when going out because the cases might be going down but 5,000 on a daily basis is not a small number.

She said in the past, the easing of community restrictions would always result in higher COVID-19 cases.