Majority of the over four percent of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) case fatalities recorded in Cagayan de Oro City in 2020 involved seniors aged 60 years old and above, City Hall’s resident epidemiologist said Saturday, January 2.
Moreover, their chances of survival lower if they suffer from comorbidities, such as chronic kidney disease.
“The chances of survival are lower if the senior COVID-19 patient suffers from chronic kidney disease which is usually caused by diabetes,” City Health Office (CHO) epidemiologist Dr. Teodulfo Joselito Retuya Jr. said in his yearend assessment of recorded COVID-19 cases in the city during Saturday noon’s press briefing.
As of the end of December, the city recorded 141 COVID-19 deaths. While explaining that the city’s 2020 case fatality rate is not that critical, Dr. Retuya attributed the deaths to these seniors’ exposure to their loved ones aged 21 years old to 50 years old who are authorized persons outside residence (APOR).
“When coming home, these APORs relax their guard and don’t observe minimum public health protocols despite working outside. But lately they were observing physical distancing and hand disinfection,” Dr. Retuya said.
In her end-of-year COVID-19 case update, acting City Health Officer Dr. Lorraine Nery said Cagayan de Oro City recorded 30 COVID-19 cases from December 30 to 10 pm of January 1 or an average of 10 to 11 cases a day.
“Most of these cases involve index or new cases as well as persons with close contact to previous or active cases,” Dr. Nery said.
But Dr. Retuya said while the daily COVID-19 case count went down last month, they expect a surge in cases either next week or the second week of January.
Aside from the lower case count, Dr. Nery said Cagayan de Oro City recorded a high recovery rate, with the latest recovery rate pegged at 86.16 percent for the December 31-January 1 period.
About 84 COVID-19 patients are also confined in the city’s private hospitals, at JR Borja General Hospital and at the Camp Evangelista Station Hospital, Dr. Nery said.
Mayor Oscar Moreno echoed Dr. Retuya’s point, citing the case of one senior COVID-19 patient who got infected and died despite being bedridden.
“That’s why it is important for people especially the youth who may have a high rate of survival but can easily be infected and pass that infection to their loved ones especially their grandparents. They should not ignore or take their compliance to minimum health protocols for granted,” Moreno said.
Despite recent developments in the rollout of vaccines worldwide, Mayor Moreno said minimum health protocols remain important in the campaign against COVID-19, especially in light of the new virus strain that had resulted in travel bans imposed on several countries.
“Health experts around the world still agree that the minimum health protocols are more effective in protecting the people against the virus than the vaccines,” Moreno said. (Stephen Capillas/City Information Office)