SOME netizens have compared the Philippines’ rise in the world stage of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) cases to a beauty pageant.
They say the country has made it to the semifinals after edging out Pakistan to take the 20th spot late Thursday night, Oct. 1, 2020.
Although it’s no laughing matter, the latest figures have to be taken into perspective.
Based on the Coronavirus Resource Center of the Johns Hopkins University of Medicine, the Philippines, as of Friday morning, Oct. 2, had 314,079 cases, of which 54,294 were active.
The cases, according to the website covid19.gov.ph, were broken down to 4,866 asymptomatic; 47,023 mild; 744 severe; and 1,661 critical.
A total of 5,562 deaths, or less than one percent of the country’s total population of 106.7 million, have been reported.
According to online news website Rappler, it is possible for the country, which already has the most number of Covid-19 cases in Southeast Asia, to surpass Italy “in a few days, if not hours.”
Given this latest announcement, what do naysayers expect the Duterte administration to do?
They’ve already slammed the government for imposing the longest lockdown amid the Covid-19 pandemic, which has displaced thousands if not hundreds of thousands of workers.
Here in Cebu, local government units have had no choice but to shift their focus to reviving the economy. They cannot afford to sit this one out and wait for a vaccine to be found and be distributed.
Quarantine restrictions have been gradually eased to allow more people to leave their homes to collect goods or to go back to work, which increases the risk of infection. And with the government having ramped up its testing capacity in the last three months, the number of Covid cases was expected to go up.
However, the continued observance of minimum health guidelines like mask-wearing, physical distancing and restrictions on gatherings, among others, will help keep a rein on the rate of transmission.