When the pandemic was first announced in March, did you somehow harbor the hope that the Philippines could reach zero COVID-19 cases at a certain point in the future? Sorry to burst your bubble, but that’s not going to happen because Health Secretary Francisco Duque admitted today that it’s not his goal.
“This virus is gonna stay with us. Let us not deceive ourselves. We’re not going for zero COVID cases,” he admitted.
He said that the government just wants to manage the transmission of the virus and increase the capacity of the health system.
“That’s it,” he said.
Wow, such lofty ambitions, sir!
Despite the Philippines becoming the country with the 20th highest number of cases in the world, Duque assured the public that we’re doing better than European countries which have far more sophisticated health care systems.
“We have to look at the recovery rate. Our recovery rate today is about 85%. So I think that’s the most important statistic to consider. We have known now over the last six or seven months or eight months that about 90% are mild and about 5% are asymptomatic. The rest would account for severe and critical,” he said.
“We’re heading towards the right direction. I say this because all the investments that we have made in terms of ramping up the health systems’ capacity, our minimum public health standards, our quarantine facilities, our contact tracing have improved,” he explained further.
The Philippines has the highest number of COVID-19 cases in Southeast Asia, with 322,497 cases recorded as of yesterday, including 273,079 recoveries and 5,776 deaths.
This article, Here To Stay: Duque says reaching zero COVID-19 cases not his goal, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia's leading alternative media company.