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Wala talagang palusot! Ping sees ugly COVID-19 figures as DOH corrects ‘backlogs’

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Now that the Department of Health is “correcting” its backlogs on COVID-19 cases, the public may have to brace for DOH figures getting “ugly” before they get better, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said Sunday.

Lacson also said the DOH’s correction of the backlogs may indicate it was not completely honest in the early goings of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“There is no way around the real Covid-19 situation in the country. Now that the backlogs are being corrected, expect things to get ugly before they get better. One thing is certain: they were not completely honest in their daily situation report before,” Lacson said in a post on his Twitter account.

On Friday night, the DOH reformatted its reporting of COVID-19 cases to include “fresh” and “late” cases.

It said the “fresh” cases refer to test results released to patients within three days. “Late” cases refer to those released to patients in four or more days.

During the Senate Committee of the Whole’s hearing on the COVID-19 situation, Lacson questioned the DOH’s handling of data, citing its limitations in terms of data encoding.

Such limitations give the public the impression that there are only 200 new cases a day. In turn, such flaws may lead to wrong decisions made by policy makers, he said. “So naliligaw ang kababayan natin,” he added.

Before this, the University of the Philippines Resilience Institute bared “alarming errors” by the DOH in handling patient-level data.

This prompted Lacson to point out such flaws, whether inadvertent or otherwise, would be reason enough to make people responsible and accountable.

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