Drilon demands transparency from DOH, reminds data manipulation is fatal

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Senate Minority Leader Franklin on Monday demanded “full transparency” from the Department of Health (DOH) after the “fresh and late” COVID-19 cases reporting drew flack and confused the public. 

“We demand full transparency. With the DOH changing the manner of reporting the data after more than two months, we cannot help but suspect that it is hiding something. Honesty is the best policy here,” Drilon said in a message.

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“Manipulating the data will not bring us anywhere. The experiences all over the world show that a great deal of transparency spells a huge difference in winning the battle against this pandemic,” he added.

Drilon cited South Korea, which he claimed did “not hide the real data” from its citizens and effectively contained the virus spread. China, however, is the opposite, he added. 

“It cannot be denied that the China experience has shown that the lack of transparency could be fatal,” he said.

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Last week, DOH changed its format of reporting cases and classified it into two. The “fresh” cases are those whose test results were released to the patient within three days from reporting time, and “late” cases or results released four days ago or more.

Also read: No more investigation on ‘overpriced’ PPEs after Duterte defended DOH

DOH transparency

Vice President Robredo earlier questioned the logic behind DOH’s new method of reporting. 

“Hindi ko alam kung ano iyong logic doon sa pagbigay ng classification… Nakakalito kung bakit kailangan iyong ganito. Dapat kapag first time nire-report parati iyong ‘fresh’ e,” Robredo said in her weekly radio show.

(I don’t know what’s the logic behind that new classification. It’s confusing. Those that are reported for the first should always be “fresh” cases.)

Ted Herbosa, the government’s special adviser and executive vice president of the University of the Philippines, meanwhile said the number of COVID-19 cases in the Philippines is “really going down.”

“Fresh cases are really going down. The cases have gone down to a single digit. In fact, there was a day there were only 5 new confirmed cases a day. At least with the removal of what we call that the trend had been continuing. It was only the dumping of the backlog that caused confusion,” he added.

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