Independent research group OCTA on Sunday, Aug. 1, said Metro Manila is now experiencing a "serious surge" in coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases after reporting 1,740 new cases on Saturday, July 31.
OCTA said this is the highest number of cases recorded in the National Capital Region (NCR) since May 10 when the region was still under modified enhanced community quarantine.
NCR is currently under general community quarantine with heightened restrictions and will revert back to a two-week enhanced community quarantine starting Aug. 6.
"The seven-day average increased to 1,279, an increase of 40 percent from the previous week. The rapid growth rate suggests the possibility of community transmission of the Delta variant in the NCR," the group pointed out.
The reproduction number in the NCR increased to 1.52 from 1.29 the previous week, indicating that there is a sustained transmission of the virus.
OCTA also noted that hospital bed occupancy went up from 38 percent to 45 percent with 530 more hospital beds occupied this week as compared to the previous week.
Likewise, intensive care unit (ICU) utilization increased from 45 percent to 52 percent.
"At the current rate, e.g. if there are no changes in quarantine restrictions in the NCR, hospital beds would reach 70 percent occupancy in less than five weeks, while ICU beds will reach 70 percent occupancy in less than three weeks," OCTA said.
Based on its latest monitoring report, OCTA noted that 13 local government units in the NCR are now considered "high risk" areas for COVID-19.
These are Pateros, Makati, San Juan, Malabon, Navotas, Las Piñas, Pasig, Muntinlupa, Valenzuela, Parañaque, Quezon CIty, Marikina, and Caloocan.