The COVID-19 positivity rate in the National Capital Region (NCR) has dropped to five percent, an independent monitoring group said on Thursday.
This developed as the Philippine Nurses Association (PNA) expressed support to the Department of Health’s (DOH) call for an extension of the declaration of state of calamity due to COVID-19 in the country.
In a tweet, OCTA Research Group leader Dr. Guido David said the seven-day positivity rate in Metro Manila decreased to five percent on January 10 from 7.9 percent on January 3.
Positivity rate refers to the percentage of people who were found positive for COVID-19 among the total number of individuals tested.
“The last time the positivity rate was below five percent was on June 22, 2022 at the outset of three COVID-19 waves in NCR,” David said.
Earlier, OCTA reported that the positivity rates in Luzon provinces such Batangas, Bulacan, Ilocos Norte, and Pangasinan decreased to “low” levels, meaning they went below the five percent threshold.
Bulacan recorded the lowest at 3.5 percent, down from the previous week’s 4.4 percent.
Meanwhile, the DOH recorded 481 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, while the active tally increased to 11,975.
The nationwide total is currently at 4,068,802, while the number of active cases went up from the 11,856 recorded on Tuesday.
In an interview with TeleRadyo, PNA president Melvin Miranda said the state of calamity has to be extended because the government has yet to act on a bill creating a Center for Disease Control and Prevention in the country.
“So as we have the currently 15,472 active cases, seemingly we need to pursue yung extension po sana dahil nga po sa hindi pa po naisasabatas yung pagsulong ng bill in the creation of the Center of Disease Prevention and Control,” Miranda explained.
He also noted that all nurses and healthcare workers have yet to receive their allowances.
“Binigyan po kami ng datos ng Department of Health. Since November, we are still on the 54 percent among the supposedly target po of the 98 percent na dapat as of the November 2022 na target. So with that percentage of the distribution and disbursement of the health emergency allowance, from the One COVID Allowance, so we need to consider pa rin po ang pagbibigay ng highest attention,” Miranda said.
President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has said that he was “very hesitant” to extend the state of calamity in the country due to COVID-19, saying the situation now is far from that.
In an interview with Press Undersecretary Cheloy Garafil, Marcos said “we are not in a state of calamity anymore, technically speaking.”