‘DIRTY’ ICE CREAM. Students buy ”dirty”ice creams on cones from a vendor near the Dasmarinas Elementary School in Barangay Salawag, City of Dasmarinas, Cavite on Thursday (Sept. 15, 2022). Ice cream has been a popular snack among the students in the area. (MNS photo)

MANILA, Sept 16 (Mabuhay) — The Department of Health on Thursday (DOH) said it is seeing a slow, continued decline in coronavirus cases in the recent week.

In a Viber message to reporters, the DOH said the positivity rate or number of people testing positive for the virus increased to 12.5 percent as of Sept. 13, a 0.5 increase from last week’s 12 percent.

The country’s average daily cases is 2,201 as of Sept. 14.

“Nationally, we are seeing a slow continued decline in cases, with reported cases in the recent week being 7 percent lower than the previous, which recorded an average of 2,369 cases daily,” the DOH said.

Earlier, the OCTA Research Group noted an increase in the positivity rate of two provinces — Rizal and Pangasinan.

Rizal’s positivity rate increased to 17.4 percent as of Sept. 10 from 12 percent on Sept. 3.

Pangasinan’s positivity rate increased to 10.9 percent as of Sept. 12 from 6.9 percent on Sept. 10.

On Wednesday, the World Health Organization urged countries to invest in vaccinating 100 percent of the vulnerable population – senior citizens, individuals with comorbidities and healthcare workers – in a bid to end the pandemic.

It also warned countries against new variants, more serious and critical cases, and deaths if they do not “seize the opportunity to end the pandemic”.

As of Sept. 12, almost 72.8 million Filipinos have been fully vaccinated. Of the tally, around 6.8 million are senior citizens.

More than 18.6 million individuals have received their first booster dose and more than 2.5 million have received their second booster shots. (MNS)