MANILA - Wide COVID-19 vaccination in Metro Manila has led to a decline of virus infections in the capital region, a member of the UP Pandemic Response Team said Monday.
There is a decrease in the number of COVID-19 infections based on confirmatory or RT-PCR tests in Metro Manila but cases in other parts of the country continue to rise, according to Jomar Rabajante. These include the Cordilleras, Bicol region, Davao region and Mimaropa, he said.
"Mas bibigyan ko ng weight ang epekto ng ating mga bakuna. Sa NCR, maraming lugar ang nagkaroon na ng mataas na bakuna. Pag nabakunahan ang isang tao, di 100 percent efficacy... pero ang kagandahan nito, mas mababa ang viral load, 'di ka ganun makakahawa. Makikita natin to in the number of cases," he told ABS-CBN's Teleradyo.
(I will give more weight to the effect of vaccines. In NCR, many areas have high vaccination rate. When a person is vaccinated, the efficacy is not 100 percent...but the viral load is lower, you have a low chance of infecting other people. We can see this in the number of cases.)
The decline in COVID-19 cases contrast with the number of virus patients in intensive care units, he added.
"Nagi-increase ang ating ICU although medyo nagpa-plateau ngayon. Nandun ito sa projections ngayong end of September and simula ng Oktubre," he said.
(ICU occupancy is increasing although it has somewhat plateaud now. It's in our projection this end of September to the beginning of October.)
"Kaya siguro ito ang sinasabi ng mga ospital na overwhelmed pa rin sila kahit nagde-decrease ang mga kaso."
(This might be why hospitals are saying they are overwhelmed but cases are decreasing.)
In order to reach 90 percent of herd immunity, the Philippines must also vaccinate children, beginning with the young adult population, Rabajante said.
"Kung masisimulan ang teenagers na mabakunahan, somehow lalapit tayo dun sa 90 percent at ito ang tinitingnan natin na kung mangyayari mas tuloy-tuloy na talaga bumaba ang mga kaso," he said.
(If teenagers are vaccinated, somehow we'll be close to reaching 90 percent vaccination rate and we're expecting for cases to continue to decline.)
Parents are urged to get vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to surround their children with protected adults, said Dr Mary Ann Bunyi, president of Pediatric Infectious Disease Society of the Philippines.
"Ikutan po natin ng mga matatanda na may bakuna na ang mga batang hindi pa po maaaring mabakunahan. Kahit papaano po mayroon indirect protection na makukuha," she said.
(Let's surround children with vaccinated adults. Somehow, they will receive indirect protection.)
Adults who go outside their homes must also strictly observe minimum health protocols, Bunyi said. Vaccinating children against the flu will also cross out another possible illness, she added.