High COVID positivity rate in New Year not acceptable, says Palace

Published December 31, 2021, 2:45 PM

by Argyll Cyrus Geducos

Malacañang has reminded the public to play their part in preventing the further spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), saying nobody wanted to start the new year with a high positivity rate of the virus.

Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles (PCOO / MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles made the statement after the Philippines reported a 6.6-percent positivity rate on December 30, a number that is higher than the five-percent indicator of the World Health Organization (WHO).

In his last press briefing of the year, the acting Palace spokesman said acknowledged the increase in the positivity rate and that this was not how anybody want to start the new year.

“We cannot sugarcoat this. This is not how we want to start [the] year 2022,” he said on Friday, December 31.

According to Nograles, another surge could be avoided if the public will continue playing its role in preventing the spread of the disease.

“We know everyone wants to make COVID-19 surges a thing of the past and this is possible only if we welcome 2022 conscious that we should keep our masks on, wash our hands, maintain social distancing, and please get vaccinated,” he said.

He added that the low number of COVID-19 cases that the country had enjoyed over the past few weeks was no reason to be complacent. He encouraged the public to get vaccinated.

“The numbers speak for themselves. We hope those who have not yet gotten vaccinated get the message: It is time to get your jabs,” Nograles said.

“We reiterate that we cannot be complacent and we cannot take anything for granted because the threat posed by the Omicron variant is real,” he added.

As of December 30, the country has received more than 210 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines. Over 108 million doses have been administered with a total of 49,626,439 individuals completing their vaccinations. (Argyll Cyrus B. Geducos)