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Philippines’ COVID-19 tally tops 265,000; new deaths hit record high

The number of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases in the Philippines leapt to 265,888 after the Department of Health (DOH) announced 4,699 new infections on Monday, the seventh straight day in which more than 3,000 new cases were reported.

The death toll climbed to 4,630 with a record 259 new fatalities, 28 of whom died in September, 110 in August, 97 in July, 22 in June, and one each in April and May.

“There were 297 cases that were previously reported as recovered but after final validation, they were deaths (253) and active (44) cases,” the DOH said.

Metro Manila still recorded the highest number of new infections at 1,498, followed by Cavite with 221, Bataan with 198, Bulacan with 185, and Batangas with 176.

Eighty-seven percent or 4,090 of the newly reported cases contracted COVID-19 in the past 14 days.

Total recoveries also rose to 207,504 after 249 more patients recovered from the respiratory disease.

The remaining 53,754 are active cases undergoing treatment or quarantine, 88.4 percent of which are mild, 8.2 percent are asymptomatic, 1.3 percent are severe, and 2.1 percent are in critical condition.

As of September 13, the Philippines had 122 licensed laboratories that had tested over 2.9 million individuals while 50 percent of COVID-19 intensive care unit beds nationwide were occupied and 27 percent of mechanical ventilators were in use.

Meanwhile, the reduction of physical distancing in public transportation vehicles started earlier on Monday even as the DOH maintained that keeping a distance of at least one meter remains ideal. 

The government’s inter-agency COVID-19 task force has vowed to tackle growing concerns on the reduction of physical distancing. —LDF, GMA News