MANILA - It will take some two to three days to see the "real picture" of the country’s COVID-19 caseload, amid the decreasing number of recoveries tallied over the past few days, according to the Department of Health (DOH).
In a public press briefing, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said they will need to see if this trend of having less recoveries than number of fresh cases will persist in the next few days.
Vergeire said the decrease in cases may be a result of having having less cases to classify as recoveries in the DOH’s “mass recovery program” - which was made daily instead of weekly in a bid to address supposedly skewed case data.
"If magtuloy-tuloy sa susunod na araw, this is the true picture. Kasi kung matatandaan ninyo sa mga nakalipas na araw mayroon po tayong tinag na time-based tagging for the past days; kasi pinilit nating ma-exhaust ang mga napag-iwanan na hindi nata-tag," Vergeire said.
"Kaya medyo marami po noong una, at paliit nang paliit na lang po kasi it's showing yung numbers natin. So tingnan po natin for the next 2-3 days para makita natin if this really is the picture already."
(If this continues for the next few days, this is the true picture. If you can recall, for the past few days, we implemented time-based tagging for the past days, because we tried to exhaust the cases that were not tagged as recovered. As a result, there were a lot of recoveries at first and now we see a decrease in recoveries. So we have to observe for the next 2-3 days so we can see if this really is the picture already.)
Fresh cases on Friday were at 8,748 - the 12th straight day that fresh infections were less than 10,000. But according to the ABS-CBN Investigative and Research Group, it was the second day that the active number of cases increased.
There were also 4,143 new recoveries, which was the lowest in nearly 2 weeks. DOH’s mass recovery program automatically tags mild and asymptomatic cases as recoveries after 14 days in isolation.
The modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) in the National Capital Region (NCR) Plus bubble - where COVID-19 has surged in the past few months - and in other areas have been extended to May 14.
Vergeire in the briefing said this was to further de-congest the hospitals, which reached full capacity due to the increasing number in COVID-19 cases.