The increase in the number of cases of COVID-19 in the country may take some time until the Christmas season approaches, according to OCTA Research fellow Guido David this Monday.
David emphasized that the Omicron BA.4 wave lasted for two months in South Africa.
“Nagsimula [dito sa Pilipinas] more or less around June, July to August so dapat naka-two months na tayo,” he said during the Laging Handa Briefing.
“Pero hindi pa tayo nasa peak. It’s taking longer. Right now, it’s looking like it will last up to 4 to 5 months, well into the ‘Ber’ months,” he added.
According to David, the long COVID-19 wave in the country may result from the increase of other variants of the virus that cause more spread of infections.
Just this Monday, the Philippine Genome Center (PGC) said that the majority or 85 percent of the results of their COVID-19 sample genome sequencing consisted of the Omicron BA.5 subvariant.
“In the past month alone, BA.5 is actually the most predominant sample or variant that we’re sequencing in the Philippines, it’s anywhere between above 85% of our sequenced samples,” said PGC director Cynthia Saloma in a press briefing.
“You have to take note that we have a bit of a bias in sampling. But based on sequenced samples, about 85 percent of sequenced samples are composed of BA.5,” she added.
COVID-19 wave may last up to ‘Ber’ months – OCTA
In addition, David also said that the COVID-19 wave might have been prolonged in the country due to the immunity of the vaccine that was given last year and few individuals injecting the booster shot.
“Most of them had their vaccines last year pa and konti lang yung nagpa-booster so nagkakaroon ng waning immunity. Bumababa yung antibody levels natin,” explained David.
Currently, there have been more than 3.8 million recorded cases of COVID-19 in the country — 37,942 of them are active, and 3,709,377 have recovered.
Meanwhile, 60,837 people have died due to the virus.
Meanwhile, the number of dengue cases recorded in the country increased to 92,343 from January to July 23, 2022, according to the Department of Health (DOH).
This is 118% higher than the reported cases in the same period in 2021, which was only 42,294 before.