DOH classifies Cordilleras, Cagayan Valley, Zamboanga as 'high-risk' for COVID-19

Gillan Ropero, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 11 2021 12:22 PM

MANILA - The Department of Health on Monday classified as "high risk" for COVID-19 the Cordilleras, Cagayan Valley and Zamboanga peninsula following a rise in infections.

The three regions' bed and intensive care unit capacity were considered as "high-risk," or above 70 percent, according to DOH spokesperson Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire.

The Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) has a bed and ICU utilization rate of 86.85 percent and 85.47 percent, respectively, based on DOH data.

In Cagayan Valley, 79.69 percent of ward beds and 76.88 percent of ICU beds were occupied, while 70.16 percent of ward beds and 88.41 percent of ICU beds in Zamboanga peninsula were utilized.

"We are flagging CAR, Regions 2 and 9 with high-risk case classification based on its positive moderate risk 2-week growth rate and a high-risk average daily attack rate," Vergeire told reporters.

The regions' ADAR, or the number of new cases over a 2-week period per 100,000 individuals, was 49.55 for the Cordilleras, 35.12 for Cagayan Valley, and 9.83 for Zamboanga peninsula.

Meanwhile, virus cases in Metro Manila, Central Luzon, Calabarzon and Mimaropa have declined by 46 percent, 38 percent, 51 percent, and 12 percent, respectively.

"However, majority remain with high-risk average daily attack rates," Vergeire said.

The capital region's healthcare capacity is under "moderate risk" with bed and ICU utilization at 51 percent and 69 percent, respectively, she said.

The Philippines remains under "moderate risk" classification even as its daily virus cases declined by 33 percent in the previous 2 weeks, according to Vergeire.

Its ADAR, which has decreased to 11.43 from 17.10, remains classified as "high-risk," she said.

Vergeire last week confirmed that virus cases in the country have declined.

She urged the public to get vaccinated and continue observing minimum health protocols as she told local officials to intensify their prevention, detection, isolation, treatment, and reintegration (PDITR) strategy.

"Bagama't nakikita natin na bumababa na ang ating mga kaso, admissions natin sa ospital, ang positivity rate natin, hindi po ngayon ang panahon para maging complacent tayo," she said.

(Although we are seeing a decline in cases, hospital admission, and positivity rate, it's not the time to be complacent.)

"Kahit sinasabi natin na sa Pasko, baka better Christmas na, marami na ang bukas, 'yan po ang ating hope. At sana marating natin kung patuloy nating paigtingin ang mga ginagawa natin ngayon."

(We hope for a better Christmas and more sectors to open. Let's hope we can achieve this by intensifying our current efforts.)

More than 23.1 million individuals in the country have been fully inoculated against COVID-19 since the vaccine rollout kicked off on March 1 this year.

Nearly 26.5 million others have received their first doses of the vaccine.

As of Sunday, the Philippines has recorded 2,666,562 confirmed COVID-19 cases, of which 90,927 or 3.4 percent are active.

The country's first coronavirus infection was confirmed on Jan. 30 last year in a Chinese woman who arrived from Wuhan City, China where the disease is believed to have first emerged.