The Philippines May See a Total of 40,000 COVID-19 Cases by the End of June

The country may see a total of 40,000 COVID-19 cases by the end of June, according to a study conducted by experts from the University of the Philippines (UP).

On June 11, Institute of Mathematics Assistant Professor Guido David and Political Science Assistant Professor Ranjit Singh Rye of the UP OCTA Research team presented their findings in a briefing hosted by the Department of Health (DOH).

“Right now, ‘yung projection namin, ginamit lang namin ‘yung R0 (pronounced R-naught) na 1.2 sa Philippines. So ‘yung projection actually is nasa 40,000 cases by June 30,” David said. This number is based on the current trend of transmission and the data available.

The projection may change if the spread of COVID-19 slows down.

The reproduction number, or R0, determines the rate of infection and transmission. If R0 is greater than 1, the virus is spreading. If it’s lesser than 1, it means flattening the curve.

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According to David, the Philippines has a reproduction number of 1.2. 

“In-assume lang namin na 1.2. Kung bumaba ‘yung R0—which is bumababa pa—kasi yung NCR less than 1 ‘yung R0 so pag i-project natin ‘yan, mas konti naman ‘yung cases,” David explained.

Based on the data, the National Capital Region and Cebu present higher rates of transmission compared to the country’s other regions. There’s some good news for Metro Manila, as David said the region’s R0 dropped to lesser than one, which means a flattening of the curve.

However, Rye still recommended that the DOH stay vigilant and respond appropriately in Cebu, where transmission is high.

Rye also called on the public to do their part in preventing the spread of COVID-19 by adhering to social distancing guidelines, wearing face masks, and disinfecting frequently.

“Nandiyan po ang COVID-19, buhay na buhay siya. Naghihintay nang may mahahawaan. Dapat maging maingat po tayo at maging maagap,” he said.

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In May, the UP OCTA Research team projected that shifting to general community quarantine after May 15 may result in 24,000 COVID-19 cases by June 1

As of June 10, 4 p.m., the Philippines has recorded 23,732 cases, with 4,895 recoveries and 1,027 deaths.

Rye said their latest finding would be forward to the Inter-Agency Task Force.

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