Still not convinced
THAT DOES IT - Korina Sanchez (The Freeman) - October 14, 2020 - 12:00am

According to the DOH, the number of people who have tested positive for COVID-19 is declining. This is their statement even as we approach Italy's total number of cases. The country also leads all other Southeast Asian nations. Last March, Italy was forced into a lockdown due to the high number of cases. These were the first months when the coronavirus spread all over the world. The country similarly went into a lockdown even though the number of cases was far from that of Italy. I believe the lockdown helped control the number of cases in the country, at least in Metro Manila. Luzon was on lockdown for three months. But in June, the government eased the quarantine.

I still remember the number of positive cases being a little more than twenty thousand last June. But the following weeks saw a surge. By July, the number practically doubled. Now, after four months of relaxed quarantine, the current count is three hundred seven thousand, two hundred eighty-eight cases. The DOH claims most of the recent positive cases are mild or asymptomatic, and cites a high recovery rate. The DOH also attributes the high count to clustering in the community and extensive testing being done today. It oddly sounded like President Trump's reasoning. The number is high because more are tested.

According to, the coronavirus has infected more than thirty-three million and killed over one million people worldwide. The Philippines is at the twenty-first place behind Italy. The US is still at number one, with India second. The truth is there are still people being infected, and there are still people dying. Even if most are mild or asymptomatic, those infected are still contagious. The old and immunocompromised or those with co-morbidities can easily be infected and may not recover. For as long as there is no viable vaccine, COVID-19 will continue to be a risk.

The government has decided for Metro Manila to remain under GCQ until the end of October. The mayors are still not convinced it is safe to fully open the cities. I agree. But is everyone following the guidelines under GCQ? Some businesses have discreetly opened even if forbidden to do so. Many people come out even when not necessary. Fortunately, everyone seems to be wearing a face mask although social distancing may need some work. If many are not careful because they are tired of quarantines, I only hope they do not become infected and in turn infect others. What the mayors want to see is a steady decrease in the number of cases, whether serious, mild, or asymptomatic. The count does not discern the severity of the infection.

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