Philippines logs 6,879 new Covid-19 cases, total rises to 1,612,541


A health worker administers a dose of the BioNtech Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine to a resident at a drive-through vaccination centre in Manila City suburban Manila on July 31, 2021. - AFP

MANILA (Xinhua): The Philippines' Department of Health (DOH) reported on Tuesday (Aug 3) 6,879 new Covid-19 infections, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the South-East Asian country to 1,612,541.

The death toll climbed to 28,141 after 48 more patients died from the viral disease, the DOH added.

The DOH said nine laboratories failed to submit reports. "The relatively low (caseload) today is due to fewer samples received on Sunday," it added.

The Philippines, which has around 110 million population, has tested nearly 16 million people since the outbreak in January 2020.

The government is racing to contain the spread of the highly transmissible Delta variant believed to be driving the "exponential rise" of Covid-19 cases in the country.

World Health Organization (WHO) Representative in the Philippines Rabindra Abeyasinghe floated the possibility of a "limited community transmission" of the Delta variant in the Philippines.

Abeyasinghe said that consecutive series of samples have indicated that there are Delta variants in many regions of the country and many cities of Metro Manila.

"It may be that there is community transmission," he told a televised news conference.

The Philippines has detected 216 Delta cases, including nine deaths.

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the "impact of the Delta variant is now observed nationally and in select regions and areas."

"All areas are showing an increase in cases. Metro Manila and its adjacent areas are showing a steep increase. The rest of the country is also exhibiting a slight increase in cases," Vergeire said in another televised press conference.

Vergeire said the DOH "is treating the exponential rising of cases as community transmission."

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