The Philippines recorded 10 more cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) on Monday, bringing the total number of cases in the country to 20.
At a press briefing, Assistant Secretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the results of the testing conducted on samples collected from March 6 to 8 were released earlier in the day.
She added that authorities are now conducting contact tracing.
“Rest assured that the Department of Health (DOH) is maximizing all channels... to immediately identify and isolate, if needed, those who had contact with confirmed cases,” Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said in a statement.
Vergeire attributed the sudden rise in confirmed COVID-19 cases to an improved surveillance system.
“‘Yong biglang pagdami ng kaso, ito naman po ay dahil sa maigting na surveillance na ginagawa natin sa ngayon,” Vergeire said.
Vergeire said the four COVID-19 cases reported on Sunday night were all in stable condition at various hospitals across Metro Manila.
The DOH Epidemiology Bureau has traced 468 contacts of COVID-19 patients 4 to 10, 113 of whom have been assessed.
Of these, 107 have been placed under home quarantine while six have been isolated and classified as persons under investigation for possible COVID-19 infection.
Vergeire indicated that the DOH and the local government units had agreed that the DOH would give the media information on where COVID-19 cases are hospitalized. It will be the LGUs that will identify the patients’ areas of residence.
“May usapan na po na pagkatapos magdeklara ng DOH, sila naman po ay puwedeng mag-declare ng press conferences nila,” Vergeire said.
The health official said that the DOH’s existing stock of test kits is currently a little above 2,000.
The World Health Organization is set to donate an additional 1,000 kits this week.
Cases 7 to 10
The DOH also confirmed information released by private hospitals and local government units regarding the area of confinement and residence of COVID-19 cases number 7 to 10.
Case 7, a foreign national with no residence in the Philippines, is admitted at the Makati Medical Center.
Case 8, a Pasig City resident, is confined at the St. Luke’s Medical Center - Global City.
Case 9 is confined at The Medical City in Pasig, but the 86-year-old American male is a resident of Marikina City.
Marikina Mayor Marcelino Teodoro earlier said that four out of the eight contacts of Case 9 had developed COVID-19 symptoms.
Case 10, a Quezon City resident, is admitted at the St. Luke’s Medical Center - Quezon City.
The DOH also released background information on cases 11 to 20, which were all confirmed on Monday.
Case 11 is a 72-year-old Filipino male with no travel history who was also admitted to the The Medical City.
Case 12 is a 56-year-old Filipino male with a history of travel to the United Arab Emirates. He is currently confined at the Makati Medical Center.
Case 13, a 34-year-old Filipino male, has a history of travel to Australia. He began experiencing fever last February 28 and is now admitted at the Makati Medical Center.
Case 14 is a 46-year-old Filipino male with no travel history who developed cough and fever last February 25. He is also confined at the Makati Medical Center.
Case 15 is a 24-year-old Filipino male whose travel history is yet to be determined by the DOH. He is currently admitted to the Makati Medical Center.
Case 16, a 70-year-old Filipino male with known exposure to a COVID-19 case, is confined at the UniHealth Parañaque Hospital.
Case 17, 69-year-old Filipina woman, was also exposed to a confirmed COVID-19 case and is currently admitted at the UniHealth Parañaque Hospital.
Case 18 is a 41-year-old Filipino male with a history of travel to Taiwan. He experienced fever, headache, and body malaise on February 26 and is now confined at the Tricity Medical Center.
Case 19 is a 46-year-old Filipino female with no travel history who is also confined at the Tricity Medical Center.
Case 20, a 48-year-old Filipino male, has a travel history to Japan and is admitted at the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine.
The number of deaths due to COVID-19 in the Philippines remained at one, a 44-year-old Chinese male who was the first death due to the virus recorded outside of the epicenter China. —NB, GMA News