Philippines logs 985 new COVID-19 cases; total now at 36,438

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Philippines logs 985 new COVID-19 cases; total now at 36,438
Authorities conduct contract tracing in Quezon City in this June 25, 2020 photo.
The STAR / Michael Varcas

MANILA, Philippines (Updated, 5:41 p.m.) — Confirmed cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the country rose to 36,438 after 985 new infections were reported Monday, the Department of Health said. 

Broken down, 643 were patients who tested positive for the virus within the last three days, while 342 were people who tested positive from at least four days earlier. 

Metro Manila accounted for the most number of fresh cases at 223, followed by Central Visayas with 106 cases. The remaining 314 of these cases were from other regions. 

Of the late cases, 96 were from Metro Manila while 29 were from Central Visayas. The remainder of the late cases or 217 were detected elsewhere. 

The DOH also logged 270 additional COVID-19 survivors. This raised the total number of recoveries to 9,956. 

But 11 more people succumbed to COVID-19, bringing the nation’s death toll to 1,255. Eight of these deaths occurred between June 6 and 23. 

Some 635,395 individuals have been tested for coronavirus in the country, latest figures from DOH showed. 

Rise in cases fastest in the region, WHO says

The Philippines has the fastest increase in coronavirus infections in the Western Pacific, the World Health Organization said. Data from the United Nations health agency showed the country registered 8,143 new cases between June 16 and June 27—the highest among 22 countries in the region.

Singapore was in a far second with 2,351 new cases, followed by China—where the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19 had originated—with 302 cases in the same period.

Malacañang attempted to dispute the WHO report by citing statistics of countries from outside the Western Pacific region. 

Just like the DOH, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque has taken issue with WHO’s method, saying the rise in cases should be measured per million of each country’s population. 

President Rodrigo Duterte is expected to announce Tuesday his decision on quarantine restrictions nationwide. Metro Manila—the center of the nation’s outbreak—transitioned into general community quarantine on June 1, while Cebu City was reverted to enhanced community quarantine on June 15 after it saw rising cases of COVID-19.

Worldwide, COVID-19 has already infected over 10 million people and has killed at least 501,000 since it first emerged in Wuhan, China late last year.

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