Risk for another COVID-19 surge 'quite low' as NCR eases restrictions: OCTA Research

Gillan Ropero, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 11 2021 02:04 PM

People flock to open spaces of the Mall of Asia in Pasay City on November 6, 2021. Several Filipinos went out on the first weekend since restrictions were eased to Alert Level 2, allowing people of all ages inside malls and public places. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News
People flock to open spaces of the Mall of Asia in Pasay City on November 6, 2021. Several Filipinos went out on the first weekend since restrictions were eased to Alert Level 2, allowing people of all ages inside malls and public places. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News


MANILA— The risk is "quite low" for another COVID-19 surge in Metro Manila following the easing of restrictions, OCTA Research said Thursday.

The capital region could ease to the lowest alert level if virus infections continue to decline, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III earlier said.

The number of Metro Manila's daily virus cases has declined to an average of 400 infections following a Delta variant surge, according to OCTA Research fellow Prof. Guido David. The surge peaked in mid-September, he earlier said.

 

"When we see rising cases and when we see hospital beds are going to be threatened, we will alert the public but right now what we're seeing is the risk is at a level that is quite low. The risk of a resurgence, as Fr. Nick (Austriaco) mentioned, we believe [is] not as significant," he told reporters.

"We can always calibrate our strategy when we see a spike in cases... Cases are down, as long as people are mindful of their health protocols, we’re not seeing a significant threat in a rise in cases."

The capital region, which shifted to Alert Level 2 from Alert Level 3 on Nov. 5, remains under "low risk" classification for virus cases, the Department of Health said earlier this week.

The Philippine College of Physicians had warned government against easing quarantine restrictions too quickly as transport officials sought to increase passenger capacity of public utility vehicles ahead of the holidays.

Metro Manila, home to around 13.5 million people, shifted to Alert Level 2 from Alert Level 3 beginning Nov. 5 until Nov. 21, allowing more businesses to reopen with up to 50 percent indoor capacity for fully vaccinated individuals and 70 percent for outdoor dining.

Lawmakers have criticized OCTA Research for the accuracy of its COVID-19 projections. The group said it uses DOH data.

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