For second straight day, Philippines sets record with 28,707 new COVID-19 cases

For second straight day, Philippines sets record with 28,707 new COVID-19 cases
Vendors, truck drivers and other essential workers line up to receive their booster shot at the night market in Divisoria, Manila on Jan. 5, 2022.
The STAR / Miguel de Guzman

MANILA, Philippines — Just a day after setting a new single-day record, the Philippines on Sunday again recorded its highest number of COVID-19 cases in a day since the pandemic began with 28,707 fresh cases, bringing the national caseload to 2,965,447.

The Department of Health in its latest COVID-19 case bulletin reported that the new infections were good for a positivity rate, which refers to the percentage of coronavirus infections based on the total tests conducted, of 44.0% out of 77,479 tests.

VIEW TRACKER: COVID-19 and Vaccination in the Philippines

According to the DOH, 14 labs were not able to submit their data to its system. "Based on data in the last 14 days, the 14 labs contribute, on average, 5.1% of samples tested and 5.7% of positive individuals," it said. 

The DOH also reported 2,579 recoveries —  bringing the total number to 2,785,182 — while deaths now stand at 52,150 after 15 more casualties were tallied. 

Active cases, too, are at their highest in nearly three months with 128,114 people still recovering from the infection, according to the DOH.

The Philippines is in the middle of its worst surge since the Delta variant. The previous peak during the Delta-driven surge was at 26,303 cases until the DOH recorded 26,458 cases on Saturday afternoon. 

Earlier, independent pandemic monitor OCTA Research said that the positivity rate in Metro Manila may breach 50% in the coming days. A positivity rate of 50% would mean that one in every two tests comes out positive. 

The current positivity rates are nowhere near the benchmark of 5% set by the World Health Organization for opening economies.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque said his department is readying for a "probable" shift to Alert Level 4 in the coming days, though he was careful to note that the healthcare utilization in Metro Manila has not yet reached the threshold required for the stricter alert level. 

It has been 663 days since the first enhanced community quarantine was hoisted over some parts of Luzon, and the Philippines remains under the world's longest quarantine. — Franco Luna with reports from Gaea Katreena Cabico and Xave Gregorio





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