COVID-19 in Metro Manila might reach peak in mid-late May: analyst

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 29 2020 11:34 AM

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MANILA - The COVID-19 pandemic will reach its peak in Metro Manila in mid to late May, an official of the University of the Philippines' Response Team said Wednesday.

The group launched ENDCOV.ph, a real-time dashboard of virus cases in the Philippines, which produces the pandemic's curves and computes the virus' reproductive number in an area, according to Teodoro Herbosa, co-lead of the UP COVID-19 Response Team.

"For Metro Manila, it seems we’re nearing the peak. I think it will be mid-May or late May we’ll be actually peak and start to go down in terms of numbers. The numbers are plateauing based on new cases," he told ANC.

"The confirmed cases may increase because of the number of testing centers. I’m more relying on the new cases reported."

Herbosa, however, said the country's capacity for testing was still not enough to determine the pandemic's peak.

"That’s the other thing the statisticians are saying, we can’t give correct predictions because our testing is too low," he said.

The tool, which has been endorsed by the Department of the Interior and Local Government, will aid local officials in deciding on quarantine measures, Herbosa said.

"It’s syndromic, it’s real-time, it allows a local chief executive to decide whether to lock down a sitio, barangay," he said.

"If you use the current (Department of Health) epidemiologic survey there’s a lag time, the reports we’re seeing are actually a week ago. By that time, the virus has already spread."

Local disaster offices are tasked to input and validate the data in the dashboard, according to Herbosa.

"If you put in inaccurate reporting, of course the projections and models might not be valid. The responsibility is passed on to the one reporting the data," he said.

As of Tuesday, the Philippines has recorded 7,958 COVID-19 cases, with 975 recoveries and 530 deaths.