Research from University of the Philippines mathematics professor Guido David and political science professor Ranjit Singh Rye, who were fellows of the OCTA Research group of experts estimated the number of coronavirus cases in the country could shoot up to 40,000 by the end of June.
“Wala na po, panalo na tayo. We beat the UP prediction po. We beat it! So congratulations Philippines!”
In the morning of June 30, the Department of Health’s number for confirmed cases was at 36,438 which was still from June 29.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque was quick to claim victory over the 40,000 projections of the University of the Philippines number of coronavirus cases nationwide by end-June, with his fist in the air.
What Harry didn’t acknowledge was that as early as 28 June, the tally of the Department of Health showed over 46,000 positive cases. The daily tallies of the DOH are distinguished between confirmed cases and positive cases.
The positive cases are those with positive test results reported by laboratories but have not yet been validated by the DOH.
These positive cases are only added to the number of confirmed cases once they are validated by the agency.
The Department of Health’s “late” cases form the backlogs that confirm these positive cases.
So even if these cases were reported late, the number of projected positive cases is more than likely reached and validated. This means that we did not “beat” the prediction; rather, we reached UP’s projection.
The only way we could actually “beat” the predictions is if the number of positive cases was below the projection.
Using data from the Department of Health, the University of the Philippines CoviD-19 Pandemic Response Team projects the cumulative count of cases by end-August will be at 78,641.
In the EndCov.PH website this is the average of the highest and lowest numbers of cases forecast by the team come 31 August, which currently stand at 61,332 to 95,590.
As of 5 July, the number of positive cases reported by the Department of Health based on their Situationer #069 is 55,763.
The possibility of an increase in Philippines’s numbers is not far off as high-risk areas have eased restrictions and we are slowly transitioning our quarantines to less draconian measures.
Factors like increased mobility, increased testing and close proximity of people in densely populated cities and everything else in between most likely continue to contribute as factors that sustain coronavirus transmission.
The public should still be vigilant and take note of the importance the same prevention methods must be applied at all costs. Wearing of facemasks, proper hand washing, avoiding touching the face and social distancing.