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OCTA Group corrects report
By: Vanessa L. Almeda | Published Monday, February 1, 2021
The two OCTA Research reports. (from Facebook)

After coming out with a report portraying Cebu's Covid-19 cases as a "serious concern," OCTA Research Group issued another advisory saying it is Cebu City that is showing an "upward trend."

Governor Gwen Garcia welcomed this and thanked the research group for “changing its tune.”

"Aw maayo, salamat kay nakasabot na mo. Lahi ra nang Cebu City, lahi ra pud nang Cebu Province. Ug nawala na ang ‘serious concern’ kay maski pa mag upward trend lagi, kung naay igo’ng facilities to manage it, to handle it, that is not a serious concern," she said.

The new advisory also included data that are more concentrated in Cebu City.

"As I have always been saying, it's not a matter of achieving zero Covid. We have to live with the disease. It's a matter of managing Covid-19. And that's exactly what the mayors of our 44 towns and 6 component cities are doing which is why we have kept it to a minimum of 25 per 100,000 (cases)," she further added.

In his Facebook post, Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas Assistant Secretary Jonjie Gonzales stated that "OCTA Research Group made a substantial adjustment in their January 28 and January 30 reports by changing the tone from 'Cebu now a serious concern' to 'Cebu City continues on an upward trend in new cases."

The governor earlier questioned OCTA's January 28 report on Cebu Province's Covid-19 situation. Combining the Province with Cebu City as one single entity, the January 28 report stated that there is a continued increasing trend in new cases in the province and has now become "a serious concern."

OCTA Research, a group of researchers and professors, regularly issues projections on Covid-19 cases in the Philippines based on the data from the Department of Health.

The governor criticized the "obsession" about reporting Covid case totals yet lacked a clear understanding of the real Covid-19 situation in the Province.

She emphasized that she will continue to defend the Province and be the "champion" of the Cebuanos who are now “helpless, voiceless and jobless.”

"Hinay-hinay mo kun mobalita mo og bati bahin sa probinsya kay tubagon ta mo. Siguroha lang nga insakto inyong data, insakto inyong mga figures, insakto ang inyong facts. Get your facts rights kay I will answer you also with facts and figures," Garcia said.

Between January 1 and 29, there are 47,735 new cases logged nationwide. Of this number, Cebu Province, with a population of 3.2 million, only recorded 812 cases or 1.7 percent of the 47,735.

The governor assured that health protocols have long been in place and are being implemented in the Province.

Garcia reiterated that the bed occupancy rate of isolation centers in the Province’s 44 municipalities and six cities is less than 20 percent. This is below the 70% critical threshold set by the Department of Health.

Of Cebu Province’s 539 active cases as of January 29, 198 are asymptomatic and 260 are mild asymptomatic. All are in isolation. (Vanessa L. Almeda)