Nearly 2,000 new COVID-19 cases bring PH total to 494,605

By CNN Philippines Staff

The Philippines on Thursday logged 1,912 new coronavirus infections, with the overall count rising to 494,605.

The Department of Health said of the total infected, active cases are at 25,614 or 5.2%.

It listed the top contributing areas as Davao City with 136 more patients, Quezon City with 107, Agusan del Sur with 61, Dagupan City with 57, and Cavite with 54.

Forty more people also died due to the disease, bringing the total fatalities to 9,739. The DOH said that of this number, 14 were earlier tagged as recoveries and were corrected as deaths.

Meanwhile, the nationwide recovery count is now at 459,252 with another 746 reported survivors.

Seven testing laboratories failed to submit data on time and were not yet included in the latest figures, the department said. It added that after final validation, five duplicates, as well as two cases found to have tested negative, were removed from the case count.

In a media briefing, a health expert warned of a possible rise in Metro Manila’s COVID-19 reproduction rate, from 1.17 to 1.5, due to the recent Feast of the Black Nazarene, which drew hundreds of thousands of devotees to the Quiapo Church despite the cancellation of the Traslacion. The reproduction rate refers to the average number of people who can be infected by a single COVID-19 patient.

Experts also said the country should brace for local transmissions of the new and more contagious COVID-19 variant, which was first reported in the United Kingdom. This is after officials confirmed on Wednesday the presence of the UK variant in a 29-year-old Quezon City resident, who returned home from Dubai on Jan. 7.

Among Filipinos abroad, cases climbed to 13,498 after the Department of Foreign Affairs confirmed another 120 patients. The number of recoveries and deaths remained unchanged at 8,585 and 935, respectively.

Global deaths are nearing two million, out of around 92.3 million infected, the Johns Hopkins University tracker showed. Recoveries are now at more than 51 million.

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