This April 2, 2020 photo shows a queue of people wearing face masks.
The STAR/Edd Gumban
Philippines reports 29 new COVID-19 fatalities, only one recovery as cases breach 3,000
Gaea Katreena Cabico (Philstar.com) - April 3, 2020 - 4:30pm

MANILA, Philippines (Update 2, 6:54 p.m.) — The number of known coronavirus infections in the Philippines reached 3,018 Friday as the officially reported cases worldwide soared past the one million mark. 

The Department of Health recorded 385 additional infections. The number of new cases is forecast to keep rising as the country has only begun ramping up its testing efforts. 

Twenty-nine new fatalities were reported Friday—the biggest one-day leap since the outbreak began in the Philippines—raising the national death toll to 136. 

As the number of deaths continues to pile up, the DOH reported only one recovered patient for the third consecutive day. In total, there are only 52 recoveries in the country. 

Data scientists from the University of the Philippines project the virus will infect between 600,000 and 1.4 million individuals in the country, with 80% from Metro Manila.

The implementation of the enhanced community quarantine in Luzon entered its third week. But the national government has yet to decide whether to lift or extend the lockdown that has upended the lives of millions told to stay home. 

Presidential Peace Adviser Carlito Galvez Jr., chief implementer of the national policy against COVID-19, announced Thursday evening that the government is planning to start mass testing of persons under investigation and persons under monitoring starting April 14. 

Widespread testing is crucial in the fight of South Korea—once the hardest-hit country outside China—against the outbreak as it allows authorities to isolate and treat infected people. 

There are now eight COVID-19 testing centers across the archipelago—five in Luzon, two in Visayas and one in Mindanao.

7 new deaths abroad

The number of Filipinos abroad who have contracted the virus reached 466 after 18 new cases were reported. The Department of Foreign Affairs said it was the lowest increase this week at 4%.

Of the figure, 129 have recovered. 

Meanwhile, there were seven new fatalities from the Americas, Europe and Middle East regions. This brought the total number of Filipinos overseas who have died from the virus to 21. 

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases across the world reached 1,014,673 with the death toll nearing 53,000.

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