DOH SHIFTS WEEKLY TIME-BASED RECOVERY TAGGING TO DAILY, ASSURES EFFORTS TO ENSURE PROPER VALIDATION OF OUTCOMES

Press Release | 27 April 2021

In order to more accurately and timely reflect outcomes of cases, the Department of Health (DOH) has implemented a daily time-based tagging of recoveries since April 19, 2021.

The DOH explained that only mild or asymptomatic cases which have more than 10 days since the date of onset of illness for mild cases, and the date of specimen collection for asymptomatic cases, will be tagged as recoveries, provided that their health statuses did not progress over the 10-day period. Additionally, the cases to be tagged as recoveries are endorsed daily to the concerned Epidemiology and Surveillance Units (ESUs) the day prior to being tagged as recoveries in order for ESUs to validate the statuses of the cases.

The DOH also addressed recent concerns regarding the integrity of the data on recoveries, citing that in many of the cases reported, most have a lead time of 7 days or less from the onset of symptoms to the date when the cases are reported, due to various factors such as the time between onset of symptoms and testing, and the turnaround time of RT-PCR results, among others. This means that there is a delay from when the case got infected, showed symptoms, got tested, and turned out positive to the date the case was reported.

Moreover, the DOH recognizes the value of having a data-driven COVID-19 response, thus we strive to provide a more accurate and near real-time data, and will not, in any way, manipulate the country’s COVID-19 data.