NCR COVID-19 reproduction number down, may fall below 1 by 3rd week of September —OCTA


COVID-19 reproduction number further went down in the National Capital Region, according to OCTA Research's latest report released on Thursday.

OCTA said NCR reproduction number decreased to 1.39 as of September 2 compared to 1.43 as of August 31.

"Based on current trends, it is possible that the reproduction number in the NCR may decrease below 1 by the third week of September," it said.

"Until then, we expect new cases to continue to increase, albeit at a slower growth rate," it added.

Reproduction number refers to the average number of secondary infections by each infected individual.

NCR posted an average of 4,637 new infections during the seven-day period, up 12% from the previous week.

Other indicators of the coronavirus situation in the region include the following:

  • average daily attack rate (33.20 cases per 100,000 population; critical level)
  • positivity rate (24%)
  • hospital bed occupancy (69%)

  • ICU occupancy (71%)

The NCR had 39,388 active cases as of Wednesday, according to the Department of Health.

Meanwhile, the same OCTA report said seven local government units are down to a single-digit growth rate: they are Muntinlupa (9%), Pasay (0%), Malabon (6%), Valenzuela (3%), Manila (0%), Caloocan (3%) and Quezon City (4%). 

DOH Epidemiology Bureau director Dr. Alethea De Guzman said the vaccination campaign was a “major factor” why cases increased at a slower rate.

“Yung pag slow down ng pagtaas ng kaso isang major factor po doon ay vaccination [Vaccination is a major factor why cases begin to slow down],” she said at a Palace press briefing.

De Guzman, however, underscored the importance of better case detection to isolation time and improved adherence to minimum public health standards.

“Gusto ko lang po ipaalala na hindi lang tayo nakasalalay sa vaccination [I want to remind everyone that we don't rely on vaccination alone],” she said. 

More than 40% of the target population in the NCR are now fully vaccinated, according to the government.  

In Lei Alviz's "24 Oras" report, De Guzman said their projections showed that Metro Manila will record 30,000 fresh COVID-19 cases by the end of September.

"May projections po sa national (There are projections in the national level ) but I do remember the average daily cases will be around 30,000 cases per day and that's for NCR alone," she said.

Likewise, De Guzman said these are only projections but these numbers still depend on local government units' efforts such as imposing granular lockdowns in areas with a spike in COVID-19 cases.—With Consuelo Marquez/KBK/LDF, GMA News