Metro Manila has recorded a seven percent uptick in COVID-19 infections in the past week compared to the previous one, independent monitoring group OCTA Research said on Sunday.
OCTA Research fellow Dr. Guido David said Metro Manila’s seven-day average in new COVID-19 cases increased from 79 during the April 17 to 23 period to 85 during the week from April 24 to 30.
The NCR’s reproduction number also went up during the same periods from 0.66 to 0.79 while its positivity rate stood at 1.4 percent over an average of 11,544 tests per day.
David, however, said the National Capital Region was “still at low risk” as of April 30.
The healthcare utilization rate in Metro Manila remained “very low” at 21 percent, with ICU utilization at 19 percent.
OCTA earlier warned a surge in COVID-19 cases was likely after the May 9 elections, following the detection of a case of the Omicron BA.2.12 variant of the coronavirus.
The surge, however, would not be as severe as previous surges, the group said.
Metro Manila will remain under Alert Level 1 until May 15.
More than half of the country’s 1,634 cities and municipalities have also been included in the list of places under the most lenient COVID-19 Alert Level for the first half of May.
The Department of Health earlier belied speculations that an artificial surge in COVID-19 cases two days before the May 9 elections will happen “for partisan use against any candidate at any level.”
Health Secretary Francisco Duque III also said there was no indication there will be a lockdown after the elections due to a possible rise in the number of COVID-19 cases.
Duque said if needed, there will only be granular lockdowns and not a widespread lockdown, which would force or influence voters to stay away from the polls – and allow certain candidates to benefit, especially at the local level where a handful of votes could decide election victories.
The department said the country still has “low COVID-19 case trends” due to the public’s compliance to minimum public health standards.
“Our high vaccination coverage for the primary series and very good compliance to minimum public health standards (MPHS) have resulted in low COVID-19 case trends with an average of 195 cases daily in the past week and an overall national positivity rate of 1.2 percent,” the DOH said.