A date with Omi




Manila Bulletin Publishing Corp



Quoting Dr. Amesh Adalja, a senior scholar at Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, “All of us have a date with Omicron.” Quoting Dr. Anthony Fauci, chief medical advisor to the President of the United States, “The Omicron virus will find just about anybody.” Quoting Dr. Guido David of OCTA Research, “If everybody gets infected there would be no people le to infect.” If what they’re saying points to teaching the world to live with COVID-19, what’s the point in contact tracing and testing? Our contact tracing czar, Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong, and ABS-CBN analytics head Edson Guido continue to believe that we need to keep up tracing and testing if we want to break the chain of transmissions. But with 78,000 tests administered in one day in the Philippines, 35,000 of whom were found positive, what’s the practicality of getting tested when chances are that one out of two will show positive results? On the other hand, one out of two will test negative – what are your chances? Spin a coin? Buy a lottery ticket? In real life, I have yet to hear of someone testing negative, but then it’s a small world I live in. All the news I hear from friends, relatives, acquaintances, and about famous people like Pia, Hidilyn, Secretary Año – is that they were positive. Occasionally, DOH actually admits that as many as a dozen or more labs had no results to report. There are just too many people to trace (and too few contact tracers to do the work) and too many tests (expensive and time-consuming) to administer. While awaiting the results, who doesn’t feel stressed out? Wouldn’t the smart thing be to assume the worst, that as soon as the simplest symptoms of fever and cough show, prepare to stay home but away from others in the household? Given a choice, home is safer and more comfy than a hospital bed! Be kind to the strangers outside your gates and don’t give them that 50-50 chance to be infected by YOU. All in one week, the world was struck by 15 million COVID cases. Let’s take a, yes, positive attitude. Leave the testing to the serious cases.