DoH adopts new case reporting standard

The Department of Health (DoH) has anounced it will change its coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) case-reporting standard starting next week to better reflect the situation in the country.

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire

The announcement came after the DoH recorded its highest case numbers on Friday because of adjustments in data extraction and recording.

The department reported 1,531 new Covid-19 cases in the country, bringing the total number of cases to 40,336. On Thursday, the total number of cases was just 294.

“Inilipat namin from 5 p.m. dati naming ine-extract ‘yung data, ginawa po naming alas-dose ng tanghali.  So, ‘yun pong previous day na nakakuha tayo ng 294, this was because shortened ang time to get data. So, kahapon po ‘yung mga hindi po natin nakuhang mga datos ay naipasok sa talaan natin kahapon (We have moved the data extraction from 5 p.m. to noon. So, in the previous day, we only had 294 cases because of the shortened time to get data. Those that we did not get from that day, we added it to the figures yesterday),” Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said during the “Laging Handa” public briefing aired on PTV-4 on Saturday

Vergeire, also the DoH spokesman, said the rise in the number of cases could also be attributed to the rise in the number of cases in different places in the country.

She added that the department would use a new way of reporting the number of cases that ditches the fresh and late case classification.

The fresh and late cases classification was introduced last May to underscore the efforts of the DoHt to catch up with the test backlog.

Fresh cases are those confirmed results that are given to the patient within three days of testing from a Covid-19-accredited laboratory, while late cases are those results that are given to the patient beyond four days.

“Ang ipapakita na lang po natin ay ang mga additional na mga kaso na pumapasok (We will show the additional cases that were included),” Vergeire said.

She added that they would add a graph that would show those confirmed cases in the past three days based on onset of illness.

“Para rin makita ng ating mga kababayan kung ano po ang pumapasok na mga bago at ‘yung true picture ng ating mga numero sa bawat araw (So that our countrymen would see what are the new cases and the true picture of the numbers every day).”

Meanwhile, according to Vergeire, they have written to the World Health Organization about the Philippines joining the solidarity trial for a possible Covid-19 vaccine.

“Mayroon na rin po tayong discussions sa apat na manufacturing firms sa ibang bansa ng bakuna para nagsi-signify tayo na sumali sa kanilang clinical trials (We have discussed with four vaccine manufacturing firms abroad to signify our intent to join the clinical trials),” she said.

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