Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 2
Bacoor had the most number of cases yesterday among cities in Calabarzon. Photo from Wikimedia Commons
Culture

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time

Yesterday, Region IVA reported 1,051 new cases, with almost half coming from Cavite. Among cities in the region, Bacoor, Calamba, Imus, San Pedro, and Antipolo had the most number of cases. BENJAMIN CO MD
BENJAMIN CO MD | Aug 23 2020

Infectious diseases and clinical pharmacology expert Dr. Benjamin Co has been thankfully breaking down coronavirus numbers in his personal blog since the outbreak started. The perspective he provides is informative, and comforting in those who are craving for a clear picture of how we are faring against the virus. Dr. Co will share daily updates and analysis of the Department of Health reported numbers with ANCX. 

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[Disclaimer: Whatever is written here is based on information released by the Department of Health (DoH) at the time of publication. Whatever changes DoH makes in their data later on…well that’s a different story in itself and as they say in their disclaimer: “the total cases reported may be subject to change as these numbers undergo constant cleaning and validation.”]

One of those good days. 

2,378 confirmed cases. 

16,459 recoveries. 

32 deaths reported. 

Of the 2,378 cases today from 99 of 109 laboratories, 43 percent were from National Capital Region. The top five provinces for newly-announced cases accounted for less than two-thirds of today’s cases. 

Only twenty-six (26) cases were removed from the total case count.

Our total active cases drops to 55,236 with patients considered severe and critical at 2.4 percent (1,326 individuals either hospitalized or not).

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 3

To help the public understand the infographics, the Health Agency divides the reports according to more recent (last 14 days) and the rest as “backlogs.”

Of the 2,378 cases today, 1,905 (80 percent) are recent (from the period August 10 to August 23, 2020) while the remaining 473 are backlogs. The bulk of the backlogs are from August 1 to 9 (277 cases) and July (154 cases), with cases still being reported all the way back from March. 

Based on recent cases alone (from August 10 to 23), NCR had 818 cases, followed by Calabarzon with 331, Central Luzon 153, Eastern Visayas with 141, Western Visayas with 130, and Central Visayas with 106.

If we include the backlog cases, NCR has 1,022 cases, Calabarzon with 414, Central Luzon with 211, Western Visayas with 152, Eastern Visayas with 136, and Central Visayas with 113. 

There were 81 repatriates reported today (32 recent while 49 backlogs). 

“Of the 2,378 cases reported today, 1,808 (76 percent) do not have information on date of onset of illness, 152 do not have information on date of specimen collection, while 115 do not have information on both.” (Yet the Department of Health insists on using the Date of Onset of Illness for reporting for a reason that will need a rational explanation.)

“In cases where date of onset of illness is missing, the date of specimen collection (minus three days) was used as proxy. In cases where both date of onset of illness and date of specimen collection are missing, the report date (minus nine days) were used as proxy.”

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 4

There were 16,459 recoveries (with nine cases being removed from the recoveries driving up the recovery rate from 61.4 percent yesterday to 69.3 percent today. 

There were 32 reported deaths: 22 from NCR (68.8 percent), four from Region VII, two from Region V and one each from Regions III, VI, and IVA. 

Of the reported deaths, 20 occurred this month, eight last July, three last June and one far back in May. 

The case fatality remains at 1.58 percent. 

Among the death reports, four cases were previously tagged as recoveries but were removed from this category after validation (most likely died).

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 5

There are now 2,150,514 individuals tested (1.97 percent of the population) from 109 accredited laboratories (82 RT-PCR and 28 GeneXpert).

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 6

 

The day yesterday

As of August 21, 2020, 2,131,138 individuals have been tested with 3,812 testing positive from 32,000 individuals tested. The report comes from 95 of 106 laboratories. The daily positivity rate stays at 11.9 percent and so does the cumulative positive rate. 

Of the 3,812 positives, NCR had the highest number: 2,695 positives from 37 of 41 testing centers. The daily positivity rate of NCR is 15.4 percent and cumulative positive rate is 12.4 percent, much higher than the national positivity rates.

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 7

Based on total cases per region, of the 187,249 tallied, NCR owns 57 percent. This is followed by Regions IVA, VII, III and VI to round up the top five. 

The repatriates, considered as a separate group care actually the fourth largest contributors to the total cases (8,274 or 4.4 percent as of yesterday).

The other regions with the highest cases for the day were Regions IVA, III, VI, and VIII. 

Two regions reported single digits, Caraga and BARMM. 

There were four cases with no identified region.

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 8

The unknown

There were 145 unknowns (2.94 percent) with no tagged location on various levels among the top five regions: four with no known region, seven with no known province in Calabarzon, with the remaining having no tagged locations at the municipality/city level. NCR had the most individuals with untagged location with 108.

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 9

 

The known

One dozen cities in NCR had three digits with Quezon City reporting 555 cases. Manila, Malabon, and Taguig reported more than 200 cases. Those with fewer than 200, but more than 100 cases were Caloocan, Parañaque, Makati, Pasig, Valenzuela, Pasay, Mandaluyong, and Las Piñas.

Cities with less than 100 cases were: Muntinlupa, Marikina, San Juan, Pateros and Navotas.

One hundred and eight (108) cases had no tagged location on the city level.

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 10

Among the remaining four top regions, the following provinces had the highest cases in the respective region: Cavite with 461 cases for Region IVA, Bulacan with 152 cases for Region III, Negros Occidental with 123 for Region VI, and Cebu with 109 cases for Region VII.

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 11
Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 12

For the first time, Region IVA reports over 1,000 cases in a day, with 826 recent cases and the remaining as backlogs. 

Bacoor reported the highest number of cases with Calamba, Imus, San Pedro and Antipolo reporting more than 50 cases. Eighteen more cities/municipalities report double digits while the remaining report single digit cases. 

The remaining had single digit cases with 26 cases having no tagged location on this level.

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 13
Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 14

Region III reported 283 cases, with the provinces of Bulacan and Pampanga reporting 75 percent of the total in Central Luzon. 

San Jose del Monte in Bulacan had the most cases followed by Marilao, Masinloc, Malolos, San Ildefonso, San Fernando and Guagua with double digits. The rest had single digit cases. There was one case with no tagged location at this level.

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 15
Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 16

Bacolod City reported 75 of the 123 cases for Negros Occidental. Iloilo City had the most cases for the province of Iloilo.

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 17

Region VII is back in the top five with Cebu province reporting 119 cases overnight. Cebu City, Lapu-Lapu, and Danao had double digit cases.

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 18

The seven-day average for cases yesterday was up at 4,202/day, but the seven-day average for deaths down at 52/day. Over the last week, there were close to 30,000 new cases and 416 new deaths for the Philippines.

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 19
Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 20

 

The week that was

The table below summarizes the week in review. 

  • Even with dismal numbers, the doubling time is slightly longer with a slightly lower seven-day growth rate (we’re staying put in the 4,000 or so number of cases). 
  • The major age group of those with coronavirus infection are between 20 to 39 years old (50.4 percent) followed by the 40-59 years old (29.3 percent). The working class group alone comprising almost 80 percent of the COVID-19 cases in the country. 
  • While there is a smaller number of senior citizens who are infected with coronavirus, the greater majority of deaths fall in this group, with 62 percent of deaths attributed to the senior citizens. Note, however, that 36 percent of deaths are between the age of 20-59. Which means that just because you’re younger does not exempt you from dying due to COVID-19. 
  • There were fewer cases this week compared to last week. There were also fewer deaths this week compared to last week. 
  • The reproduction number (Rt) is also lower this week at 1.05 than last week. However, this does not count. The Rt should be maintained at lower than one for 14 consecutive days for us to see if there is an improvement in the numbers.
  • With testing averaging more than 30,000/day, the cumulative positivity rate is at 10.5 percent. Which means we’re still not testing enough. Based on the data, facilities that test less than 500 individuals a day tend to have a higher positivity rate compared to those that test 1,000 or more individuals per day, particularly in NCR and Region IVA. This means that we will need to test almost 75,000 individuals daily to make lower the positivity rate.
Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 21

The general trend of the Philippines based on data from the European CDC is summarized below.

  • New daily confirmed cases for the past two weeks have averaged 4,000 per day. With a positivity rate of > 10 percent. 
Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 22
  • While we’re not seeing that many deaths, note the jagged lines even in a logarithmic distribution. Which tells us that the number of deaths being reported is erratic and late. We are not seeing the true picture of fatality rate in the country even if the case fatality rate is low.
Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 23
Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 24
  • While we are doing more tests (more than 30,000 a day on the average), this best effort is still not enough. Note that in spite of plateauing at more than 30,000 tests daily, our positivity rate is still in the red zone. This means that it is over 10 percent. We need to bring this down and that means that we need to do more tests and contact trace them. The approximate number of tests that needs to be done particularly in areas like NCR and Calabarzon should be around 1,000 tests per testing facility or roughly 75,000 tests a day.
Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 25
  • The next two graphs provide a clearer picture on the share of COVID tests that are positive in the Philippines, and the tests conducted per confirmed case. The comparison is based on date and shows evidence that after the lockdown in March, we had the lowest positivity rate at 2.2 percent. Unfortunately, that was not sustained as there were peaks and troughs in between bringing us to the numbers as to where we are today, at 14.5 percent.
Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 26
  • The graph below shows a correlation of the graph above. Back in May 15, it took 45 individuals tested to get one positive case. That number shrank to 17 on July 30. Less than a month today, the number of tests to get one positive patient is seven.
Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 27

 

The world

With over 260,000 new cases and 5,500 plus deaths, the global total now approaches 23.5 million cases. 

The global case fatality rate stays at 3.46  percent and recoveries at 68.1  percent. As the number of confirmed cases increase, the fatality and recovery rates now slow down. [Recovery rates are not very reliable indicators because they are subjective based on the country’s definition of how and when they consider patients “recovered.”]

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 28

Data from WorldOMeters.info.

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 29

The United States has now close 5.85 million cases with California, Florida and Texas reporting the top three cases yesterday. The US had the most deaths reported in the world yesterday at 974. 

Brazil remained in second with close to 3.6 million cases but has been seeing better numbers with a down trend for confirmed cases in the past week with a seven-day average of around 35,000 cases/day.

India remains in third spot globally but continues to have the highest number of new confirmed daily cases as it reported more than 70,000 cases yesterday. It has officially crossed its next million mark and now has 3,049,855 total confirmed coronavirus cases.

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 30

The top 10 countries contributing to the pool of coronavirus cases for August 22, 2020 were:

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 31

The Philippines came in ninth in the top 10 countries with most coronavirus cases yesterday.

And the top 10 countries with highest deaths reported for August 22, 2020 were:

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 32

Comparing the Philippines with neighboring nations like Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, and Thailand, the current scenario since the beginning of the pandemic is seen in the graph below. While we lead in cases, both Japan and South Korea have seen a noticeable spike in cases in the last two weeks, into their second wave.

Calabarzon reports more than 1,000 new COVID cases overnight for the first time 33

The numbers today are a reprieve from the overwhelming cases we’ve recorded in the past weeks. As to whether they’re truly reflective of a true down trend may be too good to be true. We can only hope that some sign of respite comes soon from a nation weary from the pandemic.

With eight days left in the month, we wonder: when will we cross the 200,000 mark?