July 15 ------ The number of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases in the Philippines rose to 57,545 on Tuesday after the Department of Health (DOH) announced 634 more infections—302 “fresh” or newly validated and 332 reported late. Among the new cases, 360 came from Metro Manila, 58 from Laguna, 32 from Cebu province, 23 from Bulacan, and 21 from Cavite.
Total recoveries also rose to 20,459 after 88 more patients recovered from the respiratory illness, while the death toll climbed to 1,603 with six new fatalities. There are also 35,483 active cases undergoing treatment or quarantine, 91.4 percent of which are mild, 7.7 percent are asymptomatic, 0.4 percent are severe, and 0.5 percent are in critical condition.
The DOH said figures reported on Tuesday were based on data submitted by 65 out of the 82 operational laboratories. The department also removed 95 duplicate cases from the total tally of infections. As of July 13, the Philippines had 63 certified polymerase chain reaction facilities and 22 GeneXpert laboratories that had tested a total of 939,529 individuals. Meanwhile, 633 or 47 percent of intensive care unit beds for COVID-19 patients nationwide were occupied while 518 or 26.3 percent of mechanical ventilators were in use.
The DOH said figures reported on Tuesday were based on data submitted by 49 out of the 82 operational laboratories. Several private hospitals across Metro Manila earlier said beds allocated for COVID-19 cases had reached full capacity following the easing of quarantine restrictions in a bid to revive the economy. Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire noted that the critical care utilization rate in Metro Manila had breached the “danger zone,” with over 70 percent of isolation and ward beds occupied as of July 12.
“‘Safe zone’ kung nasa 0 to 30 percent pa lang ng COVID-19-dedicated facilities ang nagagamit. ‘Warning zone’ naman kung nasa 30-70 percent na ang nagagamit at ‘danger zone’ kung 70 to 100 percent na ang nagagamit,” she said in a briefing. “Bagamat may mga ospital na pong reported na nasa maximum capacity na ang kanilang COVID-dedicated beds, below 50 percent pa rin po ang ating occupancy on a national scale at sinisiguro po natin na hindi pa ito tataas,” Vergeire added.