Philippines logs 2,157 new COVID-19 cases

MANILA (XINHUA) – The Philippines’ Department of Health (DOH) yesterday reported 2,157 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 infection, bringing the total number in the country to 393,961.

The DOH said 252 more patients recovered, raising the total number of recoveries to 350,216. The death toll climbed to 7,485 after 24 more patients died from the viral disease, the DOH added.

As the holiday season nears, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire told a televised briefing that the DOH is discouraging public karaoke sessions due to fear of infection.

Citing reports that singing unmasked indoor can spread the coronavirus, she said the DOH will not recommend re-opening of karaoke bars for now. However, she said that families can still enjoy the activity inside their homes.

The Philippines is also studying whether or not to ban carolling, a tradition where Filipinos hop from house to house to serenade the neighbours for some cash or sweets, due to fear of community transmissions.