The surge in coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) cases in the Visayas and Mindanao was due to several factors, among which was the complacency of locals in observing health protocols, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said Monday.

Data from the Department of Health (DOH) revealed most of the infections came from workplaces and prisons in these areas. The new transmittable variants of the virus may also be a factor behind the surge, Vergeire said.

 “Let us not just say that it’s just because of the variants. There are a multitude of factors,” Vergeire said at a briefing.

As of June 20, active cases in the Visayas and Mindanao stand at 13,313 and 14,426, respectively, DOH data showed.

Davao City, Bacolod City, Iloilo City, Cagayan de Oro City, Dumaguete City, Butuan City, Tacloban City, Polomolok in South Cotabato, and Tuguegarao City were recently identified by the OCTA Research group as areas of concern due to a continued rise in cases.

Undersecretary Abdullah Dumama Jr. of the DOH Field Implementation and Coordination Team in the Visayas and Mindanao earlier said public and private hospitals have been ordered to increase by 50% their health facilities’ beds dedicated to Covid-19 cases. Ronald Espartinez