By Ralph Lawrence G. Llemit
DESPITE achieving herd immunity, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio said the city is still not spared from a possible surge in early 2022.
Duterte-Carpio said during a radio interview on Monday, December 27, that this is based on the assessment of the Covid-19 response cluster of the city’s health group.
“Nangutana ko sa health group sa response cluster kung duna ba gyud surge sunod tuig (I asked the health group of the response cluster if we are expecting a surge next year), and the answer was– yes there will be a surge. Ang dili lang nato masulti kung unsa ka dako, or unsa ka deadly meaning unsa ka daghan ang mamatay (What is uncertain is how big or how deadly the surge will be, meaning how many will die) with the incoming surge,” the mayor said in an interview on 87.5 FM Davao City Disaster Radio.
She said that the gatherings during Christmas and the upcoming New Year festivities will “fuel” transmission, same as last year.
She added the recent detection of the Omicron variant in the country will most likely cause another surge in the city.
The waning effect of the Covid-19 vaccine is also being looked into as a contributory factor for the possible spike of cases.
“What if makaabot ta og (we would reach) 1.3 million first doses, duna pa ba gihapon ta’y (will there still be a) surge? According sa answer sa atong (to the answer of our) public health expert, niingon siya nga (they said) ‘Yes, there will still be a surge because ang (the) vaccine will only make the symptoms mild, na possibleng ikaw severe case, mahimo na lang ka’g mild or asymptomatic na case (those who could be a severe case will only be mild or asymptomatic),” she said.
“So meaning naa gihapon magtakdanay. Ang delikado lang is that kung daghan ang mild or daghan ang asymptomatic, naa sila’y mahagip or maagian nga unvaccinated nga dunay comorbidities or high risk nga mga unvaccinated, or kaning mga vaccinated nga duna nay sakit daan (there is still a risk of transmission. What is risky is the possible surge of mild or asymptomatic cases, which could probably put unvaccinated, especially those with comorbidities at risk, or even those vaccinated with existing health condition), which are vulnerable as well to succumb to Covid-19 complications” she added.
Thus, Duterte-Carpio told the public to be complacent despite the city having vaccinated almost majority of the total population.
She said the public can lessen or reduce the surge if they would not take off their mask anywhere.
“Dako kaayo og matabang ang public nga ma-lessen or ma-reduce ang kadako sa surge (The public has a huge role in lessening or reducing the surge) and that is by not taking off your mask anywhere. I suggest wearing your mask dinha pud sa sulod sa inyong (even within) household,” the mayor said, adding that they can only remove their masks when eating or drinking.
Duterte-Carpio said in a previous interview that the city is targeting to vaccinate a total of 1,299,894 Dabawenyos before the end of 2021.
Citing the Covid-19 Vaccination Cluster data as of December 27, she said the city had already vaccinated 1,225,944 first dose (94.31 percent of the total herd immunity, and 1,111,102 second dose (85.48 percent of the total herd immunity).
The mayor said the city is unlikely to achieve 100 percent herd immunity for the first doses before the year ends.
“Dili nato ma-achieve ang 100 percent sa (We cannot achieve 100 percent vaccination in the) first doses in the remaining four days of 2021,” she said. RGL