A religious brother lights candles as they set up the altar of repose near the entrance of the National Shrine of Our Mother of Perpetual Help in Baclaran on Maundy Thursday. Photo by George Calvelo,

Total Covid cases in the Philippines now at 771,497, almost 20 percent active

Today’s staggering number of new cases is due to a backlog 
BENJAMIN CO, MD | Apr 02 2021

The total number of cases reported on March 31, 2021–6,128–did not include a backlog of 3,709. In short, there should have been 9,837 cases last Wednesday. With this correction by the DOH, that deficit is carried into today’s numbers—a staggering 15,310 new cases for April 02, 2021. Or 11,601 in actuality were it not for the backlog. 

This number pushes the total cases to 771,497 with almost 20 percent active cases (more than 153,000). With 20.7 percent positivity, the effect of the ECQ on the daily cases will most likely not be seen anytime soon.

The total cases in the world has just broken the 130 million mark as there are increasing cases being seen globally. Yesterday, the world recorded more than 700,000 new cases and close to 12,000 new deaths with countries like Brazil, India, Peru and European nations spiraling into another difficult and deadly surge.

OCTA Research Monitoring Update

The latest update from the OCTA Research Monitoring Update shows the significant decline in the reproduction number in the National Capital Region on the week of the Enhanced Community Quarantine. While the Rt is now at 1.58 (from almost 2.25 two weeks ago), the continued rise has slowed down to 19 percent. Note that this increase is considerably lower compared to the previous weekly increases of 60 percent.

The ECQ has a greater effect in reducing the reproduction number compared to the GCQ. The average number of tests per day in the NCR from March 28-31 was 25,880, a 12 percent decline in tests compared to the daily average from March 21-27. The problem is that with a high positivity rate of 23 percent in the NCR, there is a need to further scale up PCR testing to be able to keep up with the surge in new COVID-19 cases.

Philippine COVID-19 UPDATE, OCTA Monitoring Report, April 01, 2021

The hotspots in the country remain NCR Plus, Isabela and Batangas.

In the list below, note the variety in positivity rate among the top 10 provinces in the country. Only Cebu has managed to bring down its positivity rate to 10 percent. Pampanga has an 18 percent positivity rate while the rest of the provinces each have an over 20 percent positivity rate. The highest positivity rate on a provincial level is Bulacan at 32 percent. This means that 1 in every 3 patients in that province will most likely test positive for the virus.

The average daily new cases is in the second column, while the third column shows the percentage change. Cebu is seeing a significant decline in cases, Benguet sees no change from the previous week and Isabela has the highest increase in cases.

The top 20 LGUs with the most cases are seen in the table below.

While Quezon City remains at the top with the highest average cases for the week, the following cities sees a significant decline in cases: Pasay City, Malabon and Cebu City. The following LGUs are seeing significant increase (> 50 percent) in cases: Taguig, Mandaluyong, Marikina, and Navotas.

Sadly, majority of the hospitals have already filled up their maximum bed occupancy especially Makati where 99 percent hospital bed occupancy and 90 percent ICU occupancy are reported. Notice, however, that other LGUs like Antipolo, Muntinlupa, Malabon, Imus and Cainta have ICU occupancies at 100 percent.

The daily attack rate is also highest in Mandaluyong, Makati, Marikina and Navotas.