CLOSE to 1,600 new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases were reported yesterday by the Department of Health (DOH), raising the total cases in the country to over 72,000.
In its latest bulletin, the DOH said that of the 1,594 new cases, majority came from the National Capital Region (NCR) at 971, followed by Cebu (252), Zamboanga del Sur (53), Negros Occidental (35), and Rizal (26).
Overall, the total number of COVID cases in the country has risen to 72,269 while six more deaths were reported, bringing the number of fatalities to 1,843.
On the positive side, there were 342 more recoveries, raising the number of survivors to 23,623.
The number of provinces without cases of COVID-19 has dwindled to just four, from a high of 26 last April 24. The last four COVID-19-free provinces are Batanes, Quirino, Aurora, and Dinagat Islands.
The DOH attributed the absence of cases in these provinces to their being isolated.
“Their local governments are also very active in terms of screening people, who come from areas with community transmission, coming into their areas,” DOH Health Promotion and Communication Service Director Dr. Beverly Ho said in a televised press briefing yesterday.
Globally, as of July 21, there were 14,562,550 confirmed cases of COVID-19, including 607,781 deaths, according to the World Health Organization.
Twenty more overseas Filipinos have been infected with the deadly virus while two more have succumbed, the Department of Foreign Affairs said. The new cases were recorded in Asia and the Pacific, Europe and the Americas.
The DFA said the number of overseas Filipinos infected with the virus since its outbreak has already reached 9,165 in 69 with 647 deaths. No new recoveries were reported by the DFA while still undergoing treatment are 3,149 victims.
The Middle East/Africa reported no new cases, deaths or recoveries.
Europe recorded 1,077 cases and 95 deaths while the Americas have 701 cases and 171 deaths respectively. The Asia and the Pacific region reported 782 cases and six deaths.
Meanwhile, eight close-in security personnel assigned to Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea have tested positive for the coronavirus disease and are now undergoing quarantine and treatment, Presidential Security Group (PSG) commander Colonel Jesus Durante III said.
Durante said Medialdea tested negative and none of his close-in security – composed of two officials and six enlisted personnel – had any contact with President Duterte.
Durante said the PSG continues to implement strict health protocols to its personnel and their dependents to guarantee the President is safe and healthy. He said the close-in security of Duterte have a billeting area separate from other personnel and even their families “to lessen exposure and to ultimately ensure that they do not become the threats themselves.” – With Ashzel Hachero and Jocelyn Montemayor