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DOH on downward trend of new COVID-19 cases: We wait for 7 days

DOH on downward trend of new COVID-19 cases: 'We wait for 7 days'

A Department of Health official said Friday the DOH is still observing the decreasing number of new COVID-19 cases reported in the Philippines, pointing out that a reliable analysis would only be possible if the trend goes on for a week.

"When we compute as to the decreasing trend of the number of cases or deaths, tinitingnan po natin 'yung seven-day moving average. So, nakakadalawang araw ho tayo, titingnan pa rin natin sa mga sususunod na araw kung ano ang maitatala natin," Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in an online forum.

"We wait for seven days so that we have this seven-day moving average and then we will analyze," she added.

Vergeire also underscored that the factors of the decrease must also be looked into to ensure that this is a genuine decrease.

"Kapag tinitingnan natin 'yung reporting, lagi nating titingnan nakakumpleto ba ang mga laboratoryo sa pag-submit sa atin ng datos and gaano ba karami ang nag-submit," she said.

"Kailangan ho nating tingnan ang lahat ng ito para masabi natin kung talagang 'yang pagbaba na 'yan ay 'di artificial because of reporting but because there really is reduction in the number of cases in our country or maybe in the National Capital Region," she added.

On Thursday, the Philippines recorded 1,987 new infections, the lowest since July 29. These were confirmed through tests done by 91 out of the 113 COVID-19 laboratories in the country.

The day before, another low number of 2,218 new infections were detected by 102 laboratories.

So far, the latest total of COVID-19 cases in the country stands at 228,403—more than 65,000 are active, 159,475 have recovered and 3,688 died. 

Decreasing case fatality rate

Though the list of COVID-19 cases in the country continues to grow, the DOH also pointed out that the case fatality rate (CFR) is positively going down in the past four months.

The CFR is computed by comparing the number of deaths with the total cumulative COVID-19 cases, according to Vergeire.

She said it reached as high as 6.7 percent in April and has declined to 5.3% in May; 3.4% in June; 2.2% in July; and down to 1.6% in August.

"This is 3,558 deaths out of 220,819 cases," Vergeire said, referring to the figures as of August.

"Tinitingnan ho nating maigi at mino-monitor na 'yung deaths sana hindi tataas at ma-manage natin nang maayos dahil nakikita naman natin mataas naman talaga ang mild and asymptomatic cases sa ating mga active cases, and severe and critical are really very low," she added. — LBG/RSJ, GMA News