Butuan City COVID-19 cases, bed occupancy declining, says mayor

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 04 2022 10:00 AM

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This transmission electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2—also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus that causes COVID-19. Virus particles are shown emerging from the surface of a cell cultured in the lab. The spikes on the outer edge of the virus particles give coronaviruses their name, crown-like. Image captured and colorized at Rocky Mountain Laboratories in Hamilton, Montana. Credit: NIAID

MANILA - COVID-19 cases in Butuan City in Caraga region are declining with its bed occupancy rate also decreasing, mayor Ronnie Lagnada said Friday.

The city, currently under Alert Level 3, records 40 to 60 new cases daily after it reached a "peak" of 179 fresh infections last month, Lagnada said. It currently has 858 active COVID-19 cases, he added.

"Once the omicron variant sets in, it really affects the whole household, building. At least the cases [are] mostly mild. Hospitalization rate is around 50 (percent) bed capacity lang, unlike before (during) delta. Overflowing talaga," he told ANC's Headstart.

"Medyo okay itong omicron naman, mas mataas talaga to, siguro times 10 ng delta. We still do granular lockdowns pero sa (but by) home quarantines, not by community."

(Omicron is a bit better, although the number of cases is really high, maybe 10 times higher than delta.)

Fully inoculated tourists need to present only their vaccination card to enter the city, while those unvaccinated are required to undergo RT-PCR or rapid antigen tests and report 5 days later to the local government for another test, Lagnada said.

"We already reached our target 70 percent of vaccination. We're targeting 10 percent more, so we're confident enough the cases will be managed and will be less severe," the mayor said when asked if cases could spike again.

The city has also put in place its "masterplan" in terms of economic recovery, the mayor said. This includes its "AgriBoost Program" for which it won the Bloomberg Philanthropies 2021-2022 Global Mayors Challenge, he added.

"The goal of AgriBoost is the city residents will have enough healthy food, while farmers and suppliers will receive good prices," he said.