MANILA, Philippines – The reporting of deaths due to COVID-19 in the past three days was delayed due to technical issues, the Department of Health (DOH) said Tuesday.
In a press briefing, DOH Epidemiology Bureau director Dr. Alethea de Guzman said the COVIDKaya system encountered technical problems that prevented the encoding of data and validation process of deaths for three consecutive days.
“The reason provided to us was that the server already reached its capacity,” De Guzman said.
She said the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) is working on identifying sustainable solutions to expand the server capacity to avoid downtimes.
“Right now, the DICT is trying to identify what will be the immediate fixes para po lumaki ang server capacity natin and longer-term, more sustainable fixes para we don’t experience these downtimes frequently,” she said.
The DOH uses the COVIDKaya system to handle, receive, and process bulk data from the COVID-19 Document Repository System (CDRS).
De Guzman said the agency extracts data from the system that goes through necessary processes in preparation for deduplication, and tagging of duplicates, which will then be reconciled to the original entry before being dropped from the linelist.
The deduplicated linelist is further checked for consistency and validity of case information then they generate the data drop, which is used to update the COVID-19 tracker.
When the COVIDKaya system went down, De Guzman said the DOH had to manually extract the data from the repository system in order to provide daily updates on the COVID-19 cases except for deaths.
She, however, assured that the glitch in the COVIDKaya System will not impact the assessment on COVID-19 situation in the Philippines and the responses being implemented.
“Dito naman sa alert level system natin, ang metrics na ginamit natin ay yung dami ng kaso and the healthcare utilization. Yung healthcare utilization—- it is a different information system,” she said.
“When it comes to case data, hindi siya naapektuhan kasi may access pa rin tayo sa CDRS, which is where we get the number of new cases. So nakakapag compute pa rin tayo kung ilan ang bagong kaso, ano yung two-week growth rate, and average daily attack rate,” she added.
After reporting zero deaths for three consecutive days, the DOH on Monday reported 93 deaths, raising the death toll to 37,494.
The DOH said that backlog deaths will be reported in separate advisories.