By Genalyn Kabiling
The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) recovery rate in the Philippines is “very heartening,” President Duterte said Monday while stressing that the country has not yet reached the second wave of coronavirus infections.
In his public address, the President welcomed the country’s “good record” in terms of the number of people recovering from the illness.
As of June 15, the country has recorded 26,420 cases of coronavirus with 6,252 recoveries and 1,098 deaths.
“You know, I cannot say it’s the second wave because it is still increasing sa infected tapos ang namatay is 1,000 (You know I cannot say it’s the second wave because the number of those who are infected is still increasing while the number of those who died is 1,000),” the President said.
“Although what is very heartening is the recovery which is about 6,252. It’s a good record compared to the other countries,” he said.
The President raised the possibility that the country’s improving recovery rate may be related to the warmer temperature, hinting that the virus probably cannot survive well in this condition.
“I don’t know if it has something to do with (the warmer weather). Wala, ang diperensiya sa atin (The only difference with us) is weather. Maybe it’s not too cold or the germ really finds no comfort in hot places,” he said.
In early May, the President first made public his observation that warmer temperature could possibly slow down the coronavirus.
At the time, he said the weather condition in the country had led to lower coronavirus infections compared to other countries.
At present, global health authorities have not found conclusive proof on the transmissibility of the coronavirus based on temperature and humidity. Recent scientific studies abroad suggested that warm weather could play a small role in slowing down the coronavirus but not necessarily kill it.
As this developed, President Duterte vowed to purchase the “miracle pill” for the new coronavirus disease and supervise its distribution to the people once it becomes available in the market.
The President voiced optimism about the potential remedy to the respiratory illness as the country’s cases of infections continued to increase.
“The only way to fight COVID is vaccine or maybe ‘yung miracle pill that would kill just as an antibiotic would kill a bacteria,” Duterte said.
“Now there is a pill, I hope it is true, na parang lalaban and it can maybe sabi kill the…’Yun ang maganda. Kapag ‘yun ang dumating, kapag available na, mag-order na ako then I will distribute (That’s good.
If that becomes available, I will make an order then I will distribute them),” he said.
Duterte further said: “I will supervise the distribution of the whatever there is to guarantee that everybody gets a fair share of the medicine and the medical care.”
The President made the latest comments amid the global race to find a vaccine and cure to the deadly coronavirus disease.
Quarantine violators warned Meanwhile, as the quarantine status has been slightly modified, the President made a fresh appeal to the public to observe health precautions to keep them safe and healthy from the coronavirus. He said minimum health standards must still be observed even as the lockdown measures have gradually eased.
“We are gradually easing restrictions to make way for our economic viability as individuals and as a nation. But it does not mean that we will forget our minimum health standards,” he said. Duterte warned anew of the “grave consequences” if people violate the quarantine restrictions, including stay-at-home rule except for essential activities.
“Hindi ko kayo mapigilan na lumabas. Hindi ko kayo mahuli lahat (I cannot stop you from going out. I cannot apprehend all of you),” he said.
“Ang problema niyan pati ‘yung mga bata kung samahin ninyo or you allow your children to go out when the place is not yet ready for them to be outside at nagkasakit, huwag ninyo kaming sisihin (The problem is if you bring your children or you allow your children to go out when the place is not yet ready for them to be outside and they get sick, do not blame us). Do not forget that we warned you about the grave consequences,” he said.