New all-time high COVID-19 infections with nearly 8,000 new cases

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Another grim milestone for the country as Health officials reported 7,999 new COVID-19 infections on Saturday. (FILE PHOTO)

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 20) — Another grim milestone for the country as Health officials reported 7,999 new COVID-19 infections on Saturday.

This is the second day in a row that the country logged more than 7,000 new cases. The total jumped to 656,056 with 12.3% or 80,642 active or currently ill patients. The latest active case count is also the country's second highest record, a few thousands below the Aug. 15 tally of 83,109 sick cases. At least 94.4% of the active cases have mild symptoms, 3.1% have no symptoms, 0.9% are in critical condition, 1% are in severe condition and 0.53% are moderate cases.

The case bulletin also showed a positivity rate of 14.6% based on data as of noon of March 19. Positivity rate is the percentage of positive individuals out of all patients recently tested. Out of 30,131 individuals who were tested, there were 4,390 that turned out positive.

The DOH will still update the figure since six testing laboratories have yet to submit their data. According to Johns Hopkins University, a higher percentage suggests higher transmission and that there are likely more people with the coronavirus in the community who have not been tested yet.

The death toll climbed to 12,930 or 1.97% of the case tally after 30 more persons died of the disease. The recovery count is at 562,484 or 85.7% of the COVID-19 total after 597 more patients got better.

The DOH said it reclassified 10 survivors into deaths after validation and removed nine duplicates, including five recoveries.

Among Filipinos abroad, the Department of Foreign Affairs listed 19 new infections, raising the total to 15,967 in 89 countries. Of this total, 3,778 cases were verified by the DOH, the DFA said. Two more patients died while 25 got better. The death toll is now at 1,047 while the recovery count rose to 9,691. There are 5,229 persons still undergoing treatment.

Updated figures

According to the OCTA Research team, Metro Manila, Calabarzon, and Central Luzon were the top three regions with the most new cases on March 19. That day, the country's daily COVID-19 count breached 7,000 for the first time with 7,103 new cases.

Of this count, Metro Manila listed 3,779 new cases while Calabarzon had 1,090 and Central Luzon had 762.

The department also posted its updated daily positivity rate for March 18 at 15.7%, with 6,280 positive individuals out of the 39,924 who were tested. It is the highest after April 22, when the daily positivity rate was over 16%.

Also on Saturday, the City of Manila recorded its highest number of daily new infections at 616, bringing total number of active cases to 2,388. Occupancy rate of six government hospitals is at 55%, while quarantine facilities are 89% occupied, according to Manila Mayor Francisco "Isko Moreno" Domagoso.

Speaking to CNN Philippines, Moreno said Tondo 1 and Sampaloc continue to record the highest cases among the city's districts.

"In my personal understanding, in the City of Manila alone this is now a resurgence," he noted.

To address this, the mayor said they placed more barangays and establishments under lockdown. He added the local government was also able to acquire additional 300 beds from a dormitel to be used as a quarantine facility.

Earlier, Moreno said he may place the capital under lockdown if citizens continue to be complacent amid the increase in the city's COVID-19 infections.