MANILA - The Philippines' fresh daily COVID-19 cases will continue to rise in the coming days or weeks, the Department of Health said Tuesday, a day after it tallied a record-high 18,332 new infections.
The additional cases bring the country's total to 1,857,646, of which 130,350 or 7 percent were active infections.
The effect of the 2-week strict lockdown in Metro Manila might be seen within 2 to 3 weeks, according to DOH spokesperson Maria Rosario Vergeire.
"Ayon po sa projections natin makikita pa rin natin tuloy-tuloy tumaas ang ating mga aktibong kaso for these coming days or maybe weeks," she told ABS-CBN's Teleradyo.
(According to our projections, we will see the continuous rise of active cases in the coming days or maybe weeks.)
"Now that local governments are doing active case finding, mas makikita nating tataas pa rin talaga ang kaso for these initial weeks that we are headed to."
(Now that local governments are doing active case finding, we will see our cases rise in the initial weeks.)
Local governments must shorten the time to find new cases and isolate them to cut community transmission, and test all symptomatic and exposed close contacts, Vergeire said.
It is also important for the public to comply with minimum public health standards and get vaccinated against COVID-19 when eligible, she added.
The health department is continuous in its emergency hiring of health workers and is also consulting experts on shortening the quarantine period of fully vaccinated medical workers exposed to COVID-19, according to Vergeire.
If recommended by experts, health workers will be quarantined for 7 days and will be tested on the fifth day.
"Ito po ay fina-finalize pa (It's still being finalized). We need to vet with our experts, but if in case they agree we are going to issue this policy po."