April 05, 2021
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 2) — The OCTA Research Group on Friday said the increase in new COVID-19 cases in Metro Manila has slowed down following the enforcement of strict lockdown.
Based on its latest report, the group said the reproduction rate, or the number of people infected by a single COVID-19 patient, decreased to 1.58 following the start of the enhanced community quarantine in Metro Manila and four nearby provinces on March 29.
A total of 4,899 new cases were recorded in Metro Manila from March 25 to April 1.
"The good news is that the growth rate compared to the previous week has now slowed down to just 19%... This percentage increase is much lower compared to previous weekly increases of 60%," OCTA said.
It said Quezon City, Manila City, Caloocan, Makati, Parañaque, and Valenzuela are starting to show a significant reduction in growth rate.
The independent research group, however, noted that this could be "attributed in part" to reduced testing in the National Capital Region. Only 25,880 COVID-19 tests were conducted in Metro Manila from March 28 to 31 — a 12% decrease compared to the average number of tests done from March 21 to 27.
"The problem is that with a high positivity rate of 23%, there is a need to further scale up PCR testing to be able keep up with the surge in new COVID-19 cases," it stressed.
It also said the daily attack rate continues to go up to 35.5 per 100,000 of the population, still making the capital region the epicenter of the coronavirus in the country.
The one-week ECQ over Metro Manila, Rizal, Bulacan, Cavite, and Laguna is set to end on April 4, but health experts and the Department of Health have recommended another week of lockdown to see a significant drop in COVID-19 cases and hospital admissions.
The country on Friday recorded 15,310 new COVID-19 cases on Friday – a new all-time high – but the Department of Health said 3,709 of these infections were part of a backlog from two days ago. Even without the backlog, the country's single day rise in infections would still have been a new record at 11,601.