COVID-19 cases in PH exceed 11,000

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 11) — The Philippines now has over 11,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus disease, the Department of Health confirmed on Monday.

The DOH recorded 292 new infections, bringing the country’s total number to 11,086.

Over half of the new cases have been logged in the National Capital Region, with 162 more people contracting the virus. This is followed by Central Visayas which registered 74, while 56 more have been recorded in other regions nationwide.

The Health department also recorded 75 new recoveries, bringing the number of those who have survived the viral disease to 1,999.

Seven more died, with the death toll at 726, the agency added.

Meanwhile, the number of infected healthcare workers has reached 1,991 as of Sunday. This constitutes nearly 20 percent of the country's tally of infections. 

Of this number, 544 medical frontliners have already recovered, while 34 have succumbed to the disease.

According to DOH, the top five medical professions with COVID-19 cases are nurses, physicians, nursing assistants, medical technologists, and radiologic technologists.

Based on the department's data, the majority of COVID-19 patients in the country exhibit mild symptoms, and the average hospital length of stay for recovered patients is at 15 days. Around 55 percent of deaths also had known comorbidities, with the top two being hypertension and diabetes.

Health spokesperson Maria Rosario Vergeire has earlier explained that the reports, including the number of new cases, are not the real-time data since all information has to be validated before reporting.

Testing capacity

Health officials have also attributed the rise in cases to expanded coronavirus testing.

There are now a total of 26 licensed laboratories across the country that can conduct COVID-19 tests, after the DOH recently certified Jose B. Lingad Memorial Regional Hospital and Eastern Visayas Regional Medical Center. 

In its latest report, the DOH noted that on Sunday, a total of 8,637 COVID-19 tests have been conducted in all of the accredited laboratories nationwide. This is the first time the country performed at least 8,000 tests in a day—a testing capacity which the department earlier targeted to have achieved by the end of April.

However, despite this being the highest number of tests conducted in a day so far, COVID-19 deputy chief implementer Vince Dizon clarified on Friday that the Philippines’ daily testing capacity for coronavirus is now already up to 12,000.

Meanwhile, the DOH continues to remind the public not to be complacent in adhering to health protocols and exercising preventive measures such as proper hygiene, physical distancing, and cough etiquette, as the world transitions into a “new normal” setting.

Globally, over 4.1 million people have so far been infected with the viral illness. Over 280,000 of these cases resulted in death, while more than 1.4 million patients have already recovered.