By Ma. Teresa Montemayor

(PNA photo by Joan Bondoc)

MANILA – The Department of Health (DOH) on Friday said influenza-like illnesses (ILI) and coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) cases are on a downward trend nationwide and are expected to plateau next month.

From Jan. 1 to Feb. 3, the DOH has recorded a total of 16,155 ILI cases, 19 percent lower compared to the 19,935 reported in the same period in 2023.

“A 10% decrease in ILI cases was observed, comparing the period December 24 to January 6, 2023 (8,199 cases) with January 7 to 20, 2024 (7,372 cases),” the DOH said.

“This number has gone down further to 4,487 cases, recorded from January 21 to February 3, 2024. The numbers may change as there may be late consultations and reports.”

The Ilocos Region, Region 4-A (Calabarzon), Soccsksargen, Caraga and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao showed an increase in ILI cases from Jan. 7 to 20, reporting 266 to 967 new cases.

Nine deaths have been reported from Jan. 1 to Feb. 3, 2024, resulting in a case fatality rate (CFR) of 0.06 percent for 2024.

For Covid-19, about 661 new cases were recorded from Feb. 6 to 12. This results in 94 cases per day average, 35 percent lower compared to the average number of daily cases recorded last Jan. 30 to Feb. 5.

Out of the 661 new cases, seven had been tagged as severe or critical. Only two deaths were recorded. Both occurred between Jan. 30 to Feb. 12.

As of Feb. 11, only 151 or 11 percent of the 1,345 dedicated Covid-19 ICU beds were occupied.

Meanwwhile, only 1,528 or 14 percent of the 11,291 dedicated Covid-19 non-ICU beds were occupied.

Based on hospital reports in the DOH Data Collect application, a total of 184 severe and critical Covid-19 cases admitted in various hospitals.

The DOH reminded everyone to continue practicing good respiratory hygiene (covering coughs), washing hands, choosing less crowds and ensuring good airflow and ventilation to keep the number of ILI and Covid-19 cases down. (PNA)