Independent research group OCTA urged the different hospitals to increase their capacities dedicated for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) patients amid the threat of the more transmissible Delta variant.
OCTA Research Group member Ranjit Rye said that this variant that originated in India is a “game changer.”
“Pag sakaling pumasok siya, dudurugin niya yung ating healthcare system dahil ang number of new cases biglang tataas dahil napaka infectious niya (If it enters, it will crush our healthcare system because the number of new cases will suddenly increase because it is very infectious),” said Rye during the Laging Handa press briefing on Thursday, June 24.
“Kailangan i-upgrade yung mga ospital natin dahil dadating at dadating po ang banta na ito (Our hospitals need to be upgraded because this threat will come),” he added.
So far, local health authorities have detected 17 Delta variant cases. All cases were returning overseas Filipinos.
Rye emphasized that the Delta is highly infectious than the Alpha variant that was first found in the United Kingdom. He said that a person with the Alpha variant can infect at least four to five people, while for the Delta, it can infect six to eight individuals.
“Maraming nahihirapan na bansa dahil sa bagong variant na ito. Isipin na natin na nandito siya kaya lalo pa tayong mag ingat (Many countries are having a hard time because of this new variant. Let’s assume that it is here already and let us be more careful),” he said.
“May Delta Plus pa. Hindi pa natin alam all about it (There’s also Delta Plus. We don’t know all about it yet),” he added.
The research team also urged the government to further strengthen its testing, tracing, isolation, border control, and vaccination strategies as well as the strict implementation of the minimum public health standards.
“Hindi po panahon para magluwag ng border restrictions natin, mga protocols natin. Hindi din panahon para tanggalin yung mga proteksyon natin sa sarili natin (It is not the time to loosen our border restrictions, our protocols. It is also not the time to remove our personal protective equipment),” he said.
“In fact, dapat isuot natin iyan hanggang mabakunahan tayo. Even pag nabakunahan tayo, kailangan pa rin natin magsuot ng minimum public health standards (In fact, we should wear them until we are vaccinated. Even when we are vaccinated, we still need to follow the minimum public health standards),” he added.