959 new COVID-19 cases in Philippines

MANILA (XINHUA) – The Department of Health (DoH) of the Philippines yesterday reported 959 new confirmed coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases, bringing the total number in the country to 478,761.

The death toll climbed to 9,263 after six more patients died from the viral disease, the DoH said. It added 26 more patients recovered, raising the total number of recoveries to 448,279.

The DoH said the low daily number of cases reported yesterday “is due to a decrease in the number of patients seen in COVID-19 laboratories during the New Year”. The DoH has suspended the licence of a big COVID-19 laboratory to operate due to its failure to report, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire told an online briefing.

Four other laboratories that have not submitted reports have also been warned, she added.

The DoH noted a drop in the daily output of laboratories across the country, from an average of 36,000 submissions a day, to only 22,000 submissions a day during the holidays.

The Philippines has tested over 6.39 million people since the outbreak so far.

The Philippines has a population of about 110 million.