Philippines: Upsurge of cases in six regions outside of Metro Manila as Covid-19 total rises to 1,230,301

A resident walks towards a Covid-19 swab testing area as officials monitor cases at a village in Quezon City, Philippines on Monday, May 31, 2021. The president of the Philippines recently warned he will jail village leaders and police officers who don't enforce pandemic lockdown restrictions to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. - AP

MANILA, May 31 (Xinhua): The Philippines' Department of Health (DOH) reported 6,684 new Covid-19 infections on Monday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the South-East Asian country to 1,230,301.

The death toll rose to 20,966 after 107 more patients died from the viral disease, the DOH said.

The Philippines with a population of more than 110 million has tested over 12 million people since the outbreak in January 2020.

The upsurge of cases in six regions outside of Metro Manila and adjacent areas has contributed to the country's increased daily caseloads recorded in recent days, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in an online briefing.

She said the regions experiencing a spike in new infections included those north of the main Luzon island, the Visayas region in the central Philippines, and the southern Mindanao island.

Vergeire said the hospital occupancy in the six regions is "nearing the high-risk level," adding that the increased mobility following the reopening of industries and easing of the quarantine restrictions contributed to the upsurge of cases.

The emergence of new coronavirus variants, the delays in isolating patients, and people flouting safety protocols have also been blamed for rising infections, she added.

"We want to remind the public that even though we can see a decline in the number of cases, we are not at that safe level where we can say we can be lax in our compliance," Vergeire said. - Xinhua
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