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Safety Prevention Protocols Still Best Defense Against COVID-19, DOH Says

The Department of Health (DOH) emphasized that the outlook of the country’s pandemic response is highly dependent on the public’s compliance to prescribed health protocols.

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In the June 6 Beat COVID-19 Virtual Presser, Health OIC-Undersecretary Maria Rosario Singh-Vergeire explained that the public must remain vigilant and practice the infection prevention and control measures, such as proper use of PPEs, physical distancing, and proper hygiene, to help limit the spread of the virus.

With the government ramping up testing, Singh-Vergeire cautioned that the current effort to expand testing does not guarantee the public’s safety and that they should continue to observe the DOH’s health guidelines. “Prevention is still the most effective intervention against COVID-19. Huwag po tayong maging kampante. Sa halip, patuloy po tayong maging responsable. Alagaan po natin ang ating mga sarili, ang ating mga mahal sa buhay, at ang iba pang myembro ng ating komunidad,” Vergeire underscored.

Singh-Vergeire also reported that the increase in cases can be attributed to clusters in specific areas and not a general increase across the country. Majority of the newly announced fresh cases on July 5 are concentrated in three regions: The National Capital Region (NCR) with 1,482 fresh cases, Central Visayas (Region VII) with 1,118, and Calabarzon (Region IV-A) with 223.

“Tumaas po ang mga average number ng mga kaso dahil sa pagtaas ng bilang ng mga kaso sa mga binabantayan nating lugar, kaya naman po kailangan nating maging mas maingat at mag-exercise ng caution lalo na para sa mga lugar kung saan may clustering of cases,” she added.

In terms of overall cases, one of the major reasons in the increase is the ongoing verification process of case data, where challenges such as system access or extraction issues are being addressed to ensure a more accurate and timely reporting from laboratories.

Despite the increase in cases, the Philippines’ case doubling time (CDT), or the time it takes for cases to increase two-fold, is still 7.95 days according to the Health Official, this indicator, along with a positivity rate of 7.3%, is a clear sign that the country is still able to manage the spread of the infection.

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