The Department of Health (DOH) confirmed 90 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday afternoon, bringing the total number of infections in the Philippines to 552 as health authorities ramp up testing nationwide.
At a virtual press briefing, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the number of fatalities also rose to 35 while the total number of recoveries climbed to 20.
Meanwhile, 704 people have tested negative for the disease.
The online COVID-19 tracker of the DOH shows that they have so far conducted 1,793 tests, with 615 persons under investigation and 6,321 under monitoring.
The DOH earlier attributed the surge of cases to the increased testing capacity of Philippine laboratories, after several sub-national laboratories became operational last week.
The steady rise of COVID-19 cases has hobbled the operations of several hospitals across Metro Manila, including The Medical City, St. Luke’s Medical Center, and Lung Center of the Philippines, which are already at full capacity or lacking personal protective equipment for healthcare workers.
Two new deaths
The two latest fatalities, both Filipino males, were identified as Patients 215 and 239.
Patient 215 was a hypertensive and diabetic 71-year-old Quezon City resident with no history of travel or exposure to known COVID-19 cases.
He died of severe pneumonia, hypertensive cardiovascular disease, and cardiac dysrhythmia.
Patient 239 was a diabetic 76-year-old Cavite resident with no travel history or exposure to confirmed cases.
He died on March 14 but his COVID-19 test results only came back positive on March 20.
He died of heart failure, community-acquired high-risk pneumonia, myocardial infarction, acute respiratory failure, and COVID-19.
Two new recoveries
The two latest recoveries are both Filipino women identified as Patients 130 and 87.
Patient 130 is a 21-year-old Davao de Oro resident with bronchial asthma and a history of travel to the United Kingdom and Qatar.
She was discharged on Monday after testing negative for COVID-19 once.
Patient 87 is a hypertensive and diabetic 76-year-old Quezon City resident with a history of exposure to a confirmed case.
She was discharged on Sunday after testing negative for COVID-19 once.—LDF, GMA News