02415: The Numbers Are Bad

Metro Manila/Luzon Community Quarantine - Day 09

Today our COVID-19 numbers surpassed the likes of Singapore when 82 new cases were confirmed, bringing us up to 462 cases in the country. In total, 33 have died and only 18 have recovered.

Somewhere around case 200 DOH stopped releasing more detailed information on diagnosed cases and focused more on the numbers. Gone are the earlier days of this crisis when we could expect a DOH update and related press briefing around 05:00pm every day and instead we seemingly get random updates sometimes multiple times in a day. Before we can find out more about some of the new cases, it feels like there's a pretty big chance that they're going to be confirmed dead the next day. It's a troubling trend that does little to reassure people that the government has a decent handle on things.

Beyond the steadily rising number of diagnosed cases, what is increasingly scary to me is how the numbers...just feel like numbers. More and more the efforts to keep pace with the new cases, we're getting less information that differentiates these numbers from one another. And when you lose sight of the people element in a humanitarian crisis like this, it's more than a little troubling.

We need to keep sight of the people that are in need. We need to cure people and not just resolve the numbers and balance the tables.