Over 7K new infections fast becoming the norm


    FOR the third straight day, over 7,000 new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases were reported by the Department of Health (DOH) yesterday, raising fears the number of new infections would reach the 8K to 11K mark by the end of March as projected by the independent research firm OCTA.

    In its latest bulletin, the DOH reported 7,757 new cases as the total jumped to 663,794, counting the 7,103 cases reported last Friday and 7,999 cases on Saturday, a new record high in the country.

    Thirty-nine more succumbed to the deadly virus, raising the death toll to 12,968, just 32 short of breaking the grim mark of 13K fatalities.

    The DOH reported 15,288 recoveries, meaning the number of survivors rose to 577,754, but the number of active cases spiked to 73,072.

    Of the active cases, 95 percent are mild cases, 2.3 percent asymptomatic cases, 1.1 percent severe cases, 1 percent critical cases, and 0.58 percent moderate cases.

    The number of overseas Filipinos who tested positive for the deadly virus neared the 16,000 mark after three more cases were reported by the Department of Foreign Affairs.

    In all, 15,970 overseas Filipinos have contracted the virus, with 9, 691 having recovered and 5,232 still under treatment.

    The death toll among overseas Filipinos now stands at 1,047.

    The Manila City Health Department said there were 631 new cases in the city, bringing to 2,656 the number of active cases in the city.

    The city health department has recorded a total of 33,844 confirmed cases so far, with 30,336 having.

    There were four more deaths in the city, raising the death toll to 852.

    Lipa Archbishop Gilbert Garcera has tested positive for the virus, becoming the 10th bishop afflicted with the disease.

    In a circular, Garcera said he and some of the priests in the diocese tested positive after undergoing RT-PCR tests.

    “At present, we are in a health-managed condition. While necessary medical treatment continues, I must admit that the battle against COVID-19 is far from over,” said Garcera.

    Before Garcera, other prelates who have tested positive were Evangelization of Peoples Prefect Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, Manila Apostolic Administrator Bishop Broderick Pabillo, Ilagan Bishop David William Antonio, Kalookan Bishop Emeritus Deogracias Iñiguez, Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Emeritus Oscar Cruz, Imus Bishop Emeritus Manuel Sobreviñas, Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma, Cebu Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus Antonio Rañola, and San Fernando (Pampanga) Archbishop Florentino Lavarias.

    Cruz and Sobreviñas eventually succumbed to the virus.

    A priest from San Agustin Church in Intramuros, Manila succumbed to the deadly virus yesterday.

    A report by CBCP News said Fr. Arnold Sta. Maria has died from COVID-19 at the age of 45.

    As a result, the San Agustin compound has been placed under lockdown.

    “Access to the church and convent will be restricted, and operations at the parish office will also be suspended until further notice,” the CBCP News report said.

    Meanwhile, Caritas Manila Executive Director Fr. Anton Pascual has also tested positive for the virus.

    “Fr. Pascual is currently recovering at the Cardinal Santos Medical Center,” Radio Veritas said. – With Ashzel Hachero