Health Secretary Francisco Duque III on Wednesday said that the “second wave” of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) transmission is now happening in the Philippines, as he noted that they consider the first three cases, all imported, like the first wave.
Duque, during the Senate Committee of the Whole Hearing, said preparations are ongoing to mitigate the possible next surge on the number of cases.
“Actually nasa second wave tayo. ‘Yung first wave nag-umpisa, batay po sa ating mga batikang epidemiologist, na ang first wave natin happened sometime in January—noong nagkaroon po tayo ng tatlong kaso ng mga Chinese nationals from Wuhan,” he said.
“‘Yun po ay kinikilalang first wave, maliit lang na wave ika nga. Pero ngayon nasa second wave tayo at ginagawa po natin ang lahat para nga ma-flatten ‘yung epidemic curve,” he added.
Secretary Carlito Galvez, the chief implementer of the national policy against COVID-19, assured during the hearing that efforts on flattening the curve are being seen as effective as the number of new cases per day averages on 150 to 200, the severe and critical cases do not go beyond 100, and lower mortality rates are being observed in previous days.
“Ibig sabihin medyo nagi-stabilize na po ang ating situation po dito sa atin,” he said, noting that the testing capacity is continuously being improved.
On Tuesday, Duque said a third wave of COVID-19 transmission would be the worst case scenario for Metro Manila if it will be placed under general community quarantine without enough testing.
The DOH reported on Wednesday an increase of 279 new positive cases of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in the Philippines, bringing the total number of cases to 13,221.
The DOH also reported five new fatalities bringing the total death toll to 842.
DOH also announced 89 new recoveries. This brings the total number of recoveries to 2,932./Stacy Ang