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COVID-19 cases in Philippines climb further to 380; death toll at 25


Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire on Sunday confirmed 73 new cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in the Philippines, bringing the total to 380.

“As of last night, meron na po tayong 380 positive COVID-19 cases. May bago po tayong naitala na 73 mula sa 307 kahapon,” she said in an interview on Dobol B sa News TV.

From 19 deaths, the fatality record climbed to 25.

Meanwhile, 17 patients have recovered.

The six latest fatalities were identified as Patients 210, 200, 310, 351, 52, and 226.

Patient 210 was an 81-year-old Filipino male from San Juan City with no history of travel or exposure to known COVID-19 cases. He tested positive for COVID-19 on March 18 and died on the morning of the same day due to cardiac arrhythmia, septic shock secondary to community-acquired high-risk pneumonia, diabetes mellitus, and coronary artery disease.

Patient 200 was a 34-year-old Filipino male from Quezon City with no history of travel or exposure to confirmed cases. He was a known diabetic who died on Saturday of acute respiratory distress syndrome secondary to severe acute respiratory illness and COVID-19.

Patient 310 was a 60-year-old Filipino female from Quezon City with travel history to France and Abu Dhabi. She died on Saturday due to acute respiratory distress syndrome secondary to COVID-19 and community-acquired high-risk pneumonia

Patient 351 was a 56-year-old Filipino male from San Juan City he died on March 19 and only tested positive for COVID-19 the following day. He succumbed to septic shock secondary to community-acquired high-risk pneumonia and COVID-19.

Patient 52 was a hypertensive 79-year old Filipino female from Batangas with a history of travel to the United Kingdom and exposure to a known COVID-19 case. She died on March 20 due to multiple organ failure secondary to septic shock from high-risk pneumonia secondary to COVID-19 and acute respiratory distress syndrome.

Patient 226 was an immunocompromised, diabetic, and hypertensive 69-year-old Filipino male from Quezon City with no history of travel or exposure to confirmed cases. He died on March 16 but only tested positive for COVID-19 on March 20. He died due to severe acute respiratory syndrome, high-risk pneumonia.

Vergeire attributed the big increase in the number of cases in the past few days to the improved testing capacity of laboratories. She said the increases of cases in the coming days might only be an ‘artificial’ trend.

“Ang atin pong laboratoryo ay nag-i-stabilize na ng capacity. Nakakahabol na po tayo sa ating mga backlogs before kaya pumapasok na ngayon ang maraming test result,’ she said.

“Maaaring artificial lang ang pagtaas na ito in the coming days because of the test results that had been delayed in the past,” she added.

Vergeire earlier said the Philippines is now able to conduct almost 1,000 tests for COVID-19 after several sub-national laboratories became operational.

The online COVID-19 tracker of the Department of Health shows that they have so far conducted 1,399 tests.

There are currently 570 patients under investigation and 6,321 patients under monitoring. —KG, GMA News

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