The Philippines remains at low risk for COVID-19 despite the slight nationwide increase in admissions in intensive care units (ICU), the Department of Health (DOH) said Friday.
“Nationally, nanatili po tayong nasa low risk case classification kahit na meron na tayong bahagyang pagtaas sa ating ICU admissions at sa mga severe at critical cases,” said Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire, officer-in-charge of the DOH.
Vergeire said the country’s ICU utilization rate climbed to 28% by from the previous 26%.
She added that the "steady uptrend" in both ICU admission in severe and critical COVID-19 cases at the national level started in early July 2022.
“Ang kasalukuyang bilang ng ating ICU at severe at critical ay halos kaparehas na ng ating level of admissions nung nakaraang Marso,” she said.
As of August 10, Vergeire said there are a total of 871 severe and critical COVID-19 cases, making up 9.27% of total admissions.
The number of dedicated ICU beds also decreased by 151 or 5% in the previous weeks, she said.
Meanwhile, the majority of admissions remain to be asymptomatic at 40.98% and mild cases at 40.77%.
Vergeire said the Philippines remains at low risk classification as it currently has an average daily attack rate (ADAR) of 3.51 per 100,000 population.
For an area to be classified under moderate risk, it should have an ADAR of at least six average cases per day per 100,000 population.
Meanwhile, she said the country’s positivity rate has increased to 18.5%
According to Vergeire, "plus areas" -- referring to the Luzon provinces of Cavite, Rizal, Laguna, and Bulacan -- and Mindanao have shown a slight increase in COVID-19 cases while the rest of Luzon and Visayas have shown signs of plateauing.
The National Capital Region (NCR) and the Cordillera Administrative Region, meanwhile, remained at moderate risk for COVID-19, although NCR has shown a slight downward trend in cases "with almost 1,300 cases per day," Vergeire said.
According to Vergeire, the remaining regions have an ADAR ranging from 1 to 3 per 100,000 population.
As far as vaccination is concerned, the DOH said of August 11, more than 72 million Filipinos have been fully inoculated against COVID-19.
Of this number, 6.8 million are senior citizens, Vergeire said, citing DOH data.
Data also showed that 9.8 million adolescents aged 12 to 17 and more than 4.3 million children aged 5 to 11 have been vaccinated against the virus.
A total of 16.8 million individuals have also received their first booster shot while 1.7 million have received their second booster dose. —KBK, GMA News