MANILA, July 12 (Mabuhay) — Central Visayas is now on the third wave of COVID-19 pandemic, Unang Balita reported on Monday, citing Dr. Eugenia Mercedes Caña, chief of the Department of Health Regional Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit (DOH RESU-7).

“Yes. We are in a third wave now. We have been monitoring the cases for the last 4 weeks in Central Visayas, not just Cebu City and our epidemic curve shows an upward trend,” Caña said in a message.

Caña said the main reason for the upward trend is the more transmissible variants of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.

“The virus keeps on evolving as it is its nature to mutate resulting to different variants which increases the virus’ transmissibility,” she said.

Also seen as likely reason for the trend is the gatherings held by some residents like weddings, fiesta and birthday celebrations.

“These events drive the transmission because you bring people together without observing the public health measures,” Caña said.

Other reasons cited by Caña were inappropriate use of public health and social measures and inequitable and uneven distribution of COVID-19 vaccines.

Despite this, DOH Region VII said the region is better off now than it was during the second wave of the pandemic in February and March.

On Sunday, the DOH said 5,916 new COVID-19 cases were reported, pushing the country’s total tally to 1,473,025.

The DOH said the new infections brought the number of active cases in the country to 49,701, of which 89.3% are mild, 5% are asymptomatic, 2.4% are severe, and 1.5% are in critical condition.

Total recoveries also rose to 1,397,403 after 6,127 more people defeated the illness. The death toll, meanwhile, climbed to 25,921 with 105 new fatalities.  (MNS)

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