Metro Manila has logged 2,823 new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases on Saturday, Aug. 7, the highest single-day record since May 2, when it was placed under modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ), independent research group OCTA said.
In its latest monitoring report released on Sunday, Aug. 8, OCTA noted that Metro Manila’s seven-day average has increased by 62 percent to 2,066 cases.
“The strong upward trend and level of new cases resembles the situation in March 9 to 15, two weeks before the NCR (National Capital Region) was placed under ECQ (enhanced community quarantine),” the group pointed out.
The reproduction number in Metro Manila also increased to 1.80 from 1.56 a week ago. Reproduction number refers to the average number of secondary infections by each infected individual.
Likewise, the positivity rate in Metro Manila has increased to 14 percent from 10 percent a week ago.
“The rapid growth rate of cases in the NCR strongly suggests the possibility that the surge is driven by the Delta variant, and the steady increase in the reproduction number may be due to the replacement of the Delta variant over the previous dominant variants (i.e. Alpha and Beta),” OCTA explained.
Citing the latest bio-surveillance data conducted by the Department of Health, OCTA said that the percentage of Delta variant cases has increased to 31 percent from 16 percent two weeks ago.
ICU occupancy and hospital bed occupancy for COVID-19 cases in Metro Manila are still within the safe levels at 59 percent and 53 percent, respectively.
However, OCTA noted that occupancy for ICU and hospital beds have increased by an average of 11 per day and 94 per day, respectively, over the past two weeks.
“With the current trends, ICU occupancy will be above 70 percent in two weeks while COVID-19 hospital bed occupancy will be above 70 percent in three weeks,” it said.
OCTA said the decision of the national government to impose a strict lockdown in Metro Manila on Aug. 6 was timely.
“If the decision was delayed to Aug. 15, the NCR would have breached 4,500 new cases per day, which would likely extend the lockdown and cause more negative impact on people and the economy,” it said.