PH confirms 73 new coronavirus cases

Rambo Talabong
PH confirms 73 new coronavirus cases

AFP

(UPDATED) The total is now at 380, as of Saturday night, March 21, from the 307 announced earlier that day

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – The Department of Health (DOH) has confirmed 73 new coronavirus cases on Sunday, March 22.

In an interview with DZBB, Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the total number of confirmed cases in the country has shot up to 380 as of Saturday night, from their earlier tally of 307, marking one of the biggest jumps in the Philippine record so far.

Before this, the DOH reported on Saturday afternoon an increase of 77 new cases from Friday’s tally.

Vergeire also confirmed that the total number of deaths related to the virus had reached 25, and recoveries had increased to 15.

In an advisory released Sunday afternoon, DOH reported two additional recoveries, bringing to 17 the number of people who recovered from the coronavirus disease. 

Why the big jump? According to Vergeire, the leap in figures could be “artificial” as the government conducts more tests and gathers more results.

“Our capacity has stabilized. We are already going through our backlogs before. Our capacity has been expanded to other laboratories,” Vergeire said in Filipino.

On Thursday, 4 subnational laboratories in the Philippines were given the greenlight to start testing. Around 125,000 testing kits from China and South Korea arrived in the Philippines on Saturday. 

What we know about cases: The DOH said patients 7, 22, 51, and 143 were among those who had recovered as of Saturday night. 

They were discharged between March 16 and 21. Here are some of their case details: 

  • Patient 7 – 38-year-old Taiwanese male from Makati City who had no travel history but had been exposed to a known COVID-19 case. He started showing symptoms on March 3, and was confirmed positive on March 8. He was discharged on March 21 after testing negative once. 
  • Patient 22 – 51-year-old Filipino female from San Juan City who had exposure to a known COVID-19 case. She started showing symptoms on March 4, and was confirmed positive on March 9. She was discharged on March 18 after testing negative once. 
  • Patient 51 – 26-year-old Filipino male from Quezon City who had no travel history but had been exposed to a known COVID-19 case. He started showing symptoms on February 28, and was confirmed positive on March 11.  He was discharged on March 16 after testing negative once. 
  • Patient 143 –  73-year-old Filipino male from Quezon City who had exposure to a known COVID-19 case. He started showing symptoms on March 11, and was confirmed positive on March 16. He was discharged on March 19 after testing negative once. 

The 6 new deaths occurred from March 16 to 21. Here are some of their case details :

  • Patient 52 – 79-year-old Filipino female from Batangas with travel history to the United Kingdom and exposure to a known COVID-19 case. She was confirmed positive on March 11 and died on March 20 at 10 pm. Her official cause of death was multi-organ failure secondary to septic shock from high-risk pneumonia secondary to COVID-19, ARDS. She was known to be hypertensive. 
  • Patient 200 – 34-year-old Filipino male from Quezon City who had no travel or exposure to a known COVID-19 case. He was confirmed positive on March 18  and died on March 21, at 10 am. His official cause of death was Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) secondary to Severe Acute Respiratory Illness COVID-19. He was known to have diabetes. 
  • Patient 210 – 81-year-old Filipino male from San Juan City who had no travel or exposure to a known COVID-19 case. He was confirmed positive on March 18 and died on the same day at 6:30 am. His official cause of death was cardiac arrhythmia, septic shock secondary to community-acquired pneumonia-high risk. He was known to have diabetes mellitus and coronary artery disease.
  • Patient 310 – 60-year-old Filipino female from Quezon City with a travel history from France and Abu Dhabi. She was confirmed positive on March 21 but with initial positive result from France upon walk-in admission on March 14. She died on March 21 at 3:55 am. Her official cause of death was ARDS secondary to COVID-19, and community acquired pneumonia-high risk. 
  • Patient 226 – 69-year-old Filipino male from Quezon City with no travel and or exposure to a known COVID-19 case. He died on March 16 at 5:24 am, 4 days before he was confirmed positive for COVID-19 on March 20. His official cause of death was severe acute respiratory syndrome, pneumonia high-risk, immunocompromised state. He was a known diabetic and was hypertensive. 
  • Patient 351 – 56-year-old Filipino male from San Juan City. He died on March 19, a day before he was confirmed positive for COVID-19 on March 20. His official cause of death was septic shock secondary to community-acquired pneumonia-high risk COVID-19. 

– with reports from Sofia Tomacruz/Rappler.com

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Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.