DOH confirms community spread of Delta variant in NCR, Calabarzon as PH detects 466 more cases

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, August 23) — An additional 466 Delta variant cases have been detected in the country, with community transmission confirmed in Metro Manila and Calabarzon, the Department of Health said on Monday. The tally of Delta cases now stands at 1,273.

The DOH said one case is still active, eight patients have died, while 457 others have been tagged as recovered.

Of the newly detected cases of the more contagious variant, 442 are local, 14 are returning overseas Filipinos, and 10 cases are being verified.

The DOH listed the location of the 442 additional local Delta cases:

- 201 in Metro Manila

- 69 in Central Luzon

- 52 in Western Visayas

- 49 in Calabarzon

- 19 in Central Visayas

- 14 in Mimaropa

- 11 in Davao Region

- 7 in Cagayan Valley

- 7 in Soccskargen

- 6 in Northern Mindanao

- 4 in Bicol Region

- 3 in Ilocos Region

DOH declared community transmission of the Delta variant in Metro Manila and Calabarzon but said more evidence is needed to say the situation is the same nationwide.

"Community transmission was identified in Region IV-A and in NCR based on the following observations: 1. Large numbers of Delta cases and 2. Case investigations and phylogenetic analysis showed that these cases cannot be epidemiologically linked to each other nor source/s of infection determined," it said in a statement.

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the World Health Organization has advised looking at the situation per region.

The Delta variant is believed to be as transmissible as chickenpox — with each infected person able to spread the virus to eight or nine others on average.

Meanwhile, the DOH also reported the detection of 90 Alpha variant cases, 105 Beta cases, and 41 Theta cases in the latest batch of whole genome sequencing of 746 samples.

The country on Monday broke its record anew for the highest number of COVID-19 infections reported in a day, with 18,332 more cases.