MANILA – The daily average of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) infections nationwide has increased to 1,400 cases, the Department of Health (DOH) said Tuesday.
The agency recorded 1,352 daily infections on May 1 to 7 from the 637 between April 24 and 30.
“About 96 percent of all of these cases are either mild, asymptomatic, or moderate cases. Meron lamang po tayong maliit na porsiyento (We only have a small percentage), around 4 percent who are severe and critical,” DOH officer-in-charge Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in a media forum.
She noted that the health care system remains at low-risk utilization status with only 21 percent of hospital wards for Covid-19 and only 16 percent of intensive care unit wards being used.
The increase in cases, she said, is caused by the mobility of the population in the past weeks, especially when religious activities and long weekends were observed.
“Until now, we don’t have new genome sequencing results yet, so, hanggang sa ngayon ‘yung ating Arcturus na variant na na-detect dito, iisa pa lang din siya (the number of detected case of the Arcturus variant is still one),” she said.
The DOH previously said the new Omicron subvariant XBB.1.16, also known as the Arcturus, is more transmissible but poses a low risk to the infected.
“Overall risk assessment is low,” the DOH said in a statement last month after the detection of the first case of Arcturus, an asymptomatic patient in Iloilo who has already recovered.
Quoting the World Health Organization, the DOH said the new subvariant did not increase severity in countries where it has been circulating.
Latest DOH data showed that 78,443,972 or 100.4 percent of the country’s target population (78,100,578) have been vaccinated against Covid-19, including 82.16 percent of 8,721,357 senior citizens, as of March 19.
Meanwhile, a total of 23,811,248 have received booster shots. (PNA)