CEBU CITY, Philippines — Local officials in Cebu City have reiterated their reminders to the public not to let their guard down just yet against the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) now that December is just one sleep away.
This as they discovered that most of the new confirmed cases of the infection has happened to be asymptomatics or infected individuals showing no symptoms of the disease.
Councilor Joel Garganera, head of the city’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC), reported that around 83 percent of the recent confirmed COVID-19 cases in Cebu City in November were asymptomatic.
Garganera said most of the asymptomatic patients underwent testing as part of routine requirements for work and travel.
“These people can potentially be sources of ‘superspreader outbreaks’ since they are the ones who are mobile and in the active workforce,” he said.
Citing data from health experts in EOC, Garganera also said they observed a rise in the number of asymptomatic COVID-19 patients in the city.
“In October, there were only 6 percent asymptomatics and 33 percent symptomatic cases while in November, we have 83 percent aymptomatics and 17 percent symptomatics,” he said.
Garganera added that most of these asymptomatic patients also happened to be second-generation close contacts from previously confirmed cases, due to the city’s ‘aggressive testing’.
In addition, the EOC’s recent data showed that from November 14 to November 27, outside transmission continued to be the top source of new infections in Cebu City.
“(These data tell) us that COVID-19 is still very much with us in the communities and the workplace,” Garganera said.
“This emphasizes the need to enforce safe workplace standards. Also, everyone should be reminded to do their social responsibility and observe these measures to prevent transmission to the vulnerable, especially during the holiday season,” he added.
As of November 29, data from the Department of Health in Central Visayas (DOH-7) showed that Cebu City, which has been placed under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) since September, had 283 active cases of COVID-19. /dbs