1,531 new covid cases were announced today, our highest ever. REUTERS/Eloisa Lopez/File Photo
Culture Spotlight

Highest ever single-day tally of 1,531 new COVID cases wraps up a day of record breakers

On a more positive note, we reached our lowest fatality rate (3.17) today and had our highest number of recoveries (400) in a single day. Elsewhere in the world, countries in the top 10 of total COVID cases also reach single-day highs. BY BENJAMIN CO MD
ANCX | Jul 03 2020

Infectious diseases and clinical pharmacology expert Dr. Benjamin Co has been thankfully breaking down coronavirus numbers in his personal blog since the outbreak started. The perspective he provides is informative, and comforting in those who are craving for a clear picture of how we are faring against the virus. Dr. Co will share daily updates and analysis of the Department of Health reported numbers with ANCX. 


Perhaps the title today should be “breaking records.” 

The change in process on the reporting system should expect an increase in numbers today. 

Again, whatever data we got yesterday and today (and even probably tomorrow) will be based on how the Health Agency will be able to reconcile all unaccounted data in the past days. And this is a serious matter.


The 4 o’clock habit

Today, the Health Agency reports the highest number of cases reported in the country ever: 1,531, split into 688 fresh and 843 late. 

With today’s report, we officially passed the 40,000 mark. We also officially passed the 1,500 threshold, coming from tethering between 800 to 1,000 cases a day. 

Of the 1,531 new confirmed cases today, 785 (51.3 percent) belong to “others.” National Capital Region (NCR) has four deaths and 413 reported cases, 393 (95 percent) of which are unknown or have no specified location. 

Region VII reported one death and 301 cases: 129 in Cebu City, 62 in Cebu Province, 29 in Lapu-Lapu, and 25 in Mandaue. Fifty one cases were classified as “unknown” with one death in this category. 

Repatriates contributed to 32 cases. 

All six deaths occurred in June.

The other records broken are our case fatality rate (at 3.17, it is our lowest) and recoveries (our 400 recoveries today is our highest ever). The latter pushes our recovery rate to 27.5 percent.

Based on Department of Health (DoH) data as of July 2, 2020, there are 26,858 active cases with 99.4 percent of them being mild (25,403 or 94.6 percent) or asymptomatic (1,289 or 4.8 percent). The serious cases—severe and critical—remain at 0.6 percent. There are less severe cases today compared to the previous day, with these four less patients either recovering or succumbing to the disease.

According to DoH, there are two more accredited laboratories today, bringing to 74 the total number of facilities that do RT-PCR testing in the country.

Part of the change in process is having the reports come in together with the 4 o’clock habit of announcing the cases for the day. I will give the Health Agency the benefit of the doubt that they’re trying to validate and clean up all the information coming their way from 74 testing centers and the local government units. 

Obviously, the kinks begin to appear each time they attempt to change the process. For example, under NCR, Quezon suddenly appears.

At first glance, you’d probably think that they were referring to Quezon City, but when you drop down further, you’d see that it’s really an encoding error. Because suddenly, Quezon is now an annex of NCR.

Breaking down the cases in actual locations would be an exercise in futility for the next few days as even the agency adapts to the “new normal.” As we can all see, more than half of today’s reported cases have no tagged location. 

Of those with tagged location, include Region IVA (85 cases), Region VIII (20 cases), Region X (19 cases), Region II (12 cases), Region XI (8 cases with one death), Region III (6 cases), Region IVB (3 cases) and one case apiece from BARMM, CAR, and Region I. 

The following regions had no reported case based on DoH’s report: CARAGA, Region IX, Region V, Region VI, and Region XII. 

There were 65 out of 68 laboratories that submitted reports as of July 1. There were 18,593 samples tested in 17,286 individuals. Of these individuals, 1,588 tested positive, or a daily positive rate of 9.2 percent (up from yesterday’s 8.9 percent).

Even the testing capacity had a record breaking number; the samples tested today were at the highest at 18,593 for July 1.

The three testing centers (Allegiant, Cebu TB reference laboratory Gene Expert, and VSMMC) in Region VII had submitted reports on July 1. 

Of the three testing facilities, 386 tested positive out of 1,219 individuals tested. While the cumulative positivity rate is up at 21.5 percent, the daily positive rate remains an alarming 32 percent.

I don’t expect the reporting system to change overnight. Hopefully, over the weekend, we see some improvement so that we can hunker down to addressing how to arrest the continued spread of the virus in the country. Otherwise, if the third quarter remains grim, expect the last quarter of the year celebrating the holiday season in “the new normal.” 


The world

The world surpasses the 11 million cases with a continued upward trajectory of cases overnight. While the number of new cases in the world today may have been slightly lower than the previous day, it was enough to break another record in the total number of cases in the world. 

There were slightly less deaths today than the previous day with 4,470 reported deaths. 

The global case fatality rate is lower at 4.76 percent and recovery rate at 56 percent.

Data from WorldOMeters.

The United States (+57,236), Brazil (+47,984) and India (+21,948) contributed to 60 percent in today’s new cases. The US broke its record highest number of new daily cases.

In the United States alone, the top three states, Florida (+10,019), California (+9,352) and Texas (+7,535) broke their individual state records. 

The United States now has 2,837,237 total cases with a case fatality rate of 4.63 percent 

Brazil in second spot with more than 1.5 million cases and the highest death cases in the world overnight with 1,277 deaths. Their case fatality rate is at 4.13 percent.

The top 10 countries in the world with positive cases are in the table above. Mexico displaces Iran for the 10th position based on the number of cases reported yesterday. Based on the seven-day average cases of India, they will soon replace Russia for the third spot any day soon.

The top 10 countries that had the highest new cases overnight were:

  • USA – 57,236
  • Brazil – 47,984
  • India – 21,948
  • South Africa – 8,728
  • Russia – 6,7560
  • Mexico – 5,681
  • Pakistan – 4,339
  • Colombia – 4,101
  • Bangladesh – 4,019
  • Peru – 3,527

Most of the 10 countries broke their own record highs. 

The Philippines stays at 39th spot in the world in terms of number of total confirmed cases with 373 people infected per million population. At the rate our numbers are climbing, we should overtake Portugal who is in 38th place in a few days. 

Our doubling time is 28 days based off a seven-day average daily growth rate of 2.5 percent.

While Indonesia has higher fatality rates than the Philippines, our CFR is relatively higher (3.17 percent) than the ASEAN average of 2.79 percent, but better than the global average of 4.76 percent. Our case recovery rate is the worse in the ASEAN region (27.5 percent) compared to the world average and the ASEAN average of 67.3 percent.

Data from COVID19Stats.