Accumulated PH COVID-19 infections breaches 458K; death toll now at 8,911

Accumulated PH COVID-19 infections breaches 458K; death toll now at 8,911

By Brenda del Rosario

MANILA — Accumulated cases of the coronavirus disease in the Philippines has now breached the 458K mark after the Department of Health registered another 1,491 infections on Saturday, 19 December 2020.

And to be exact, the total caseload of Covid-19 that PH has now stand at 458,044.

Of the total cases recorded, 28,047 (6.1%) are marked active, or those patients still undergoing treatment or quarantine.

The total number of recoveries also surged to 421,086 with the addition of 436 new recoveries while death toll rose to 8,911 after the DOH logged in 36 new fatalities.

With positivity rate as of Dec. 19, 2020 at 4.5% based on the 26,123 people tested before 12 p.m. the day prior, 1,187 of whom tested positive.

The whole country is now on its 279-days community quarantines or lockdowns and is considered as one of the longest community quarantine periods in the world.

“We are now approaching a turning point,” said Gerardo “Gerry” Bacarro, former regional president of Pfizer.

Bacarro defended the need for a vaccine to achieve herd immunity.

‘Herd immunity’, also known as ‘population immunity,’ a concept used for vaccination in which a population can be protected from a certain virus if a threshold of vaccination is reached.

The former Pfizer regional president said it happens when a large number of the population is achieved between 65-70 percent.

Worldwide, there are now at least 70 million infections of the Covid-19 virus even as lockdowns also resulted in widespread economic meltdown.

Bacarro said response to vaccine may vary to different things namely: age, co-existing disease, dose, nutritional factors, and genetics.

Bacarro also cited several Covid-19 vaccines that are already available or soon to be available vaccines.

Including their efficacy and cost, Baccaro cited five brands namely

Pfizer – 95% efficacy

Good safety (38,000 patients to be monitored)

Tested to 43,000 patients: 42% seniors

Two doses: 28 days apart

Likely price P2,400/$50

Approved for emergency use in UK, Canada, Bahrain, US (recommended approval)

  • Moderna – 94% efficacy

Tested in 33,000 patients

Two doses: 14 days apart

Likely price P4,200/$88 (2 doses)

No global reach

  • AstraZeneca: 60-90% efficacy depending on doze

Additional clinical trial to confirm efficacy at lower dose

Good date for seniors out of total 20,000 patients

Likely price P600/$12 for 2 doses (no-profit pledge)

Company has global reach

  • Sinovac – only phase 2 trial results available (700 patients

No published efficacy and safety data yet

Phase 3 trials – Chinese army, Indonesia, Brazil, Turkey, Philippines

2 doses with 14-day interval

Black market in China – $100 per dose

  • Sputnik V interim report over 90% efficacy depending on dose interval

2 doses with 28 or 42-day intervalL

Phase 3 trials for 40,000 patients in Russia, UAE, India, Venezuela and Belarus

Less than $20 (2 doses)

Bocarro said China wanted to conduct phase 3 trial in the Philippines but the FDA didn’t give them a green light.

Globally, covid-19 coronavirus cases now reached 76,041,466 including 1,681,682 fatalities.

Recoveries, meantime, is pegged at 53,309,094 with active cases at 21,050,690.

In the USA, more than 18,000 Americans died of Covid-19 in the past week.

The University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation predicts 237,000 more Americans may die of Covid-19 over the next three months. (AI/MTVN)

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