Duterte reports COVID-19 slowdown

MANILA, Philippines, April 15 ------ President Duterte has seen a gradual slowdown of the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) following the one-month enhanced community quarantine in Luzon. In a televised address late Monday night, Duterte described the Philippines’ performance in combatting the disease as remarkable because of the timely implementation of lockdowns to prevent the transmission of the virus. “Maganda pa naman sana ang record ng Pilipinas because naka-lockdown tayo on time. Nasira natin ‘yung pinto bago pumasok ‘yung mga aswang,” he said, referring to COVID-19 as an evil spirit. Duterte, however, said the people should not be complacent because the crisis is not over. He advised the public to expect a second and third waves in the number of COVID-19 cases. Duterte reiterated his appeal to the people to stay home as well as observe social distancing, proper hand washing and wearing of face masks. One month into the quarantine period, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles cited the lockdowns and stay-at-home measures imposed by the government as reasons for the slowdown of the spread of the virus. Citing experts’ observations, Nograles said the peak of COVID-19 cases would have reached between 1.9 million and 8.3 million Filipinos if the government did not implement lockdowns. COVID-19 tracker The Department of Health yesterday launched its new tracker for COVID-19 as part of its commitment to promote “transparency and accountability.” Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said the revamped COVID-19 tracker features additional information on the epidemiology of the virus, testing, health facilities and availability of personal protective equipment (PPE). With the new tracker, Duque said the public can view data on the laboratory testing capacities of the DOH accredited laboratories, including the total number of tests and individuals tested. Source: philstar.com