OCTA names COVID-19 hotspot in Pasay, says Metro Manila averaging over 900 cases daily

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 5) — COVID-19 cases in Metro Manila continue to go up, with the OCTA Research Group identifying one barangay in Pasay City as a virus hotspot.

The independent research team on Friday said Barangay 76 in Pasay City is considered a hotspot since it was identified as having the "main cluster" of COVID-19 infections after recording 128 new cases from Feb. 26 to March 4.

OCTA said this is the highest average daily cases reported in the city — even higher compared to the number of infections during the surge in August 2020.

It also said nearby Barangays 59, 70, and 36 in Pasay and Barangays Baclaran and Tambo in Parañaque City also registered high number of cases.

Due to the porous borders of Metro Manila, OCTA also reported that barangays in nearby cities are recording over 36 new cases weekly, namely Barangay Pio del Pilar in Makati City and Barangays 704 and 719 in Manila City.

"The objective is to prevent the spread of the virus from these clusters of barangays to the rest of the NCR in order to quickly reverse the pandemic surge that is happening now in parts of NCR," the group said in its report.

OCTA said the coronavirus cases in Metro Manila continue to climb, averaging more than 900 new cases over the past week. This is an increase of 50% from the previous week and 119% compared to two weeks ago.

It previously warned that it could balloon to 2,000 daily cases by the end of the month if the variants that reached the country are not contained immediately. It also said the surge could be driven by the presence of the variants first detected in South Africa and United Kingdom,

The country now has 58 cases of the variant first found in South Africa after 52 new cases were announced on Friday. Meanwhile, there are a total of 118 cases of the variant linked to the UK.

Cases in the regions

OCTA reported a drop in new COVID-19 cases in Cebu City, saying the upward trend was "reversed" in the area. However, slight increases were reported in Lapu-Lapu and Mandaue City.

It also said there is a "renewed uptick" in cases in Baguio City, warning there may be a possible infection spike in the Cordillera Administrative Region.

The country saw on Thursday another surge in COVID-19 infections with 2,452 new cases, raising the total number to 584,667.