DOH announces 13 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death; total cases at 230

Kristine Sabillo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 20 2020 04:44 PM | Updated as of Mar 20 2020 06:44 PM

A health worker crosses the bridge on Ortigas Avenue going to Pasig City on March 17, 2020 after public transportation has been ordered not to operate by the government. President Duterte ordered the enhanced community quarantine in Metro Manila and the island of Luzon to halt the continuing spread of COVID-19. Fernando G. Sepe Jr. ABS-CBN News

MANILA — The Department of Health on Friday announced 13 new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases in the Philippines, bringing the country's total to 230. 

Of this number, an additional death was reported, bringing the total number of fatalities to 18. 

Of the 13 new cases, 10 are male and 3 are female. The youngest is 25 years old and the oldest is 72 years old, said Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire during a televised conference.

Two are at the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine, 7 at St. Luke's Medical Center - Quezon City, 3 at St. Luke's Medical Center - Global City and one at De Los Santos Medical Center in Quezon City.

The additional fatality is PH124, a 65-year-old Filipino male from Quezon City who recently traveled to Singapore. DOH said he died on March 17, 2020. It was unclear why his death was announced only on Friday. The number of recoveries remained at 8.

The spread of COVID-19 pushed the government to declare a Luzon-wide lockdown, which shut down airports and public transportation, canceled classes and led to a vast work-from-home scheme for the public and private sectors. 

The Philippines remains under a state of calamity as the government continues to find ways to contain the disease, described by the World Health Organization as a global pandemic after it killed over 8,000 and infected 209,000 others worldwide.

COVID-19 may be fatal for the elderly, the immunocompromised, and those with underlying medical condition but 80 percent of cases globally showed a high chance of recovery "without needing special treatment," according to the WHO. 

WHO said COVID-19 symptoms include fever, tiredness, and dry cough. Some patients may have aches and pains, nasal congestion, runny nose, sore throat or diarrhea. The new respiratory disease has left 3,800 dead and affected 110,000 worldwide.