"We have recorded 766 healthcare workers with confirmed cases of Covid-19," Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire told a televised media briefing.
Out of the 766, Vergeire said 339 were doctors and 242 nurses. The DOH did not mention the exact professions of the remaining 185 healthcare workers.
"Unfortunately, 22 of these healthcare workers have lost their lives to Covid-19," she added.
The DOH is now conducting emergency hiring of medical workers.
"We are now hiring physicians, nurses, medical technologists, and other support health personnel on a contract of service basis, for a minimum of three months," read a DOH announcement posted on social media.
It added, "This aims to augment our current health workforce, who are working tirelessly in our fight against this pandemic."
Moreover, the DOH said it will "ensure the safety and security of its healthcare workers by providing assistance and support amidst the COVID-19 situation."
The DOH said on Friday the Philippines now has 5,878 COVID-19 cases, including 387 deaths and 487 recoveries.
The Philippines is one of the largest exporters of medical workers in the world.
On Tuesday, the Philippines issued a temporary travel ban for "all medical and healthcare professionals" while the country grapples with COVID-19. The government said only those with existing contracts abroad signed before March 8 will be allowed to leave the country.
"The DOH is directed to facilitate the emergency hiring of additional healthcare workers to assist in the local healthcare system," said Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles, the spokesman of an inter-agency task force crafting measures to combat COVID-19. - Xinhua/Asian News Network