111 new COVID-19 cases reported in the Philippines, total number climbs to 6,710

MANILA (XINHUA) – The Philippines reported 111 new COVID-19 infections yesterday, raising the total number of cases in the country to 6,710.

The Department of Health (DOH) said that 39 more patients have recovered, bringing the total number of recoveries to 693. Nine more patients have died, bringing the death toll to 446.

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in a local television interview that the rate of transmission of COVID-19 in the Philippines is slowing down.

Vergeire said that it takes an average of five days for local coronavirus cases to double in number. She said this lengthening of the “doubling time” in the number of cases is a big improvement from the previous average of three days.

“According to the experts, the doubling time is slowing down. This means, if before the cases doubled within three days, now it takes longer. The average is now almost five days,” Vergeire said.

However, she said there is no room for complacency.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte will decide this week on whether to extend or “modify” the lockdown measures he placed on the entire main island of Luzon to slow down the virus transmission. The lockdown runs until April 30.

A member of the Philippine National Police Special Action Forces watches from an armoured van while people at a market shop during a government imposed enhanced quarantine. PHOTO: AFP