Metro Manila’s COVID-19 positivity rate breaches WHO benchmark

MANILA, Philippines, June 22 ------ The COVID-19 positivity rate in the National Capital Region (NCR) has already reached five percent, surpassing the World Health Organization’s (WHO) benchmark, independent analytics group Octa Research said.

The WHO earlier recommended a five-percent threshold for COVID-19 positivity rate. “NCR positivity is 5.5% as of yesterday,” Octa Research fellow Guido David told reporters in a message. “We are seeing an increase in cases in Metro Manila, Western Visayas, and a few other provinces. It’s becoming a cause for concern, though not cause for alarm yet,” he said on ANC’s Headstart. From June 15 to 21, Metro Manila’s daily COVID-19 cases averaged at 238 from 135, said David. Meanwhile, the capital region’s one-week growth rate of cases was at 76 percent, he added.

NCR’s average daily attack rate — or the average number of new cases per 100,000 individuals — stood at 1.68, still within the ideal figure of below seven. Metro Manila’s reproduction number, on the other hand, was at two percent as of June 18, higher than experts’ recommendation of less than one. A reproduction number of two means that each COVID-19 patient may transmit the virus to two other people, David noted. Based on the latest data from the Department of Health, the country listed an additional 409 COVID-19 cases, of which, 218 were in NCR. David projected that COVID-19 infections may reach 1,000 per day by the end of June or the first week of July.