OCTA cites 'very fast' decrease in COVID infections in Metro Manila; less than 1,000 daily cases possible by end-October

Published October 13, 2021, 2:00 PM

by Ellalyn De Vera-Ruiz


Independent research group OCTA sees less than 1,000 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases per day in Metro Manila by the end of October, citing the “very fast” decline in the number of new infections over the past few weeks.

“The decrease is very fast. It’s decreasing by 30 percent every week. A decent decrease would be 20 percent,” OCTA Research fellow Dr. Guido David said in an interview with CNN Philippines on Wednesday, Oct. 13.

“I think, the level of vaccination is helping it decrease very, very quickly compared to the March-April surge when we had the Alpha, Beta variants. We didn’t have a significant level of vaccinations yet then so the decrease was slower,” he explained.

“We think that before November, the seven-day average in the NCR [National Capital Region] would be down to less than 1,000 cases per day. If we recall, before the Delta surge, after the Alpha and Beta variant surge in March and April, we were down to about 600 cases per day in the NCR, which is a good number,” he pointed out.

Metro Manila is currently averaging about 1,900 cases per day, based on OCTA’s monitoring.

“This is the lowest seven-day average since July 31 to Aug. 6, which is the week before the implementation of ECQ [enhanced community quarantine]. In other words, we have reversed the number of cases to the week before we started ECQ,” David cited.

With the continuous decline in the number of new cases, OCTA believes that Metro Manila is ready to be placed under a lower alert level.

“Based on our metrics, what we’re seeing is that at the first week of October it was already possible to lower the alert level to 3. Even alert level 2 is possible right now,” David said.

He noted that ICU utilization is the only indicator that remains at a “high” level but is “already decreasing.”

David reiterated that “we’re already at the tail-end of the Delta surge”

“Overall, it’s going to be a good Christmas. I’m very optimistic. It is not just the light at the end of the tunnel, we’re seeing the endgame,” he added.