MANILA (UPDATE) — The Philippines on Friday reported a record-high 401 deaths due to COVID-19, more than half of which have been reclassified, with active infections also reaching an all-time high at over 178,000, the health department announced.
The country also reported 12,225 new COVID-19 cases, the third-highest daily tally since the pandemic started, according to the ABS-CBN Investigative and Research Group.
This pushed the country's cumulative number of infections to 840,554.
The day's cases though does not include data from 10 laboratories that failed to submit results on time.
Friday's 401 reported deaths, the highest announced by the Department of Health (DOH) in a single day, raised the country's death toll due to the disease to 14,520.
The day's number of fatalities surpassed the April 6 record of 382 deaths.
According to the Department of Health (DOH), 213 of the fatalities announced were initially tagged as recoveries but turned out to be deaths after the agency's final validation.
DOH is now recording an average 171 deaths in day for the past week, according to ABS-CBN Data Analytics head Edson Guido.
Remaining active infections, on the other hand, climbed to 178,351, a new record-high since the pandemic hit the Philippines over a year ago. This accounts for 21.2 percent of the total number of infections.
Guido said the country's active cases is the "highest for any country" in Southeast Asia, after surpassing Indonesia's 176,672 active cases on Feb. 5.
Some 97.5 percent still battling the disease have mild symptoms, 1.4 percent are asymptomatic, 0.5 are severely ill, and 0.4 are critically ill. This accounts for 77.1 percent of the total number of recorded cases in the country.
The health department logged 946 newly-recovered patients, raising the total number of people who recuperated from the disease to 647,683.
Out of the 39,630 people who underwent testing for the novel coronavirus, some 21.4 percent were found positive for the disease.
A total of 37 duplicate cases, 18 of which were recoveries, have been excluded from the total tally, according to the DOH.
Dedicated intensive care units in Metro Manila are 80 percent filled up, based on the agency's latest bulletin. Isolation beds have also reached 72 percent capacity.
Sixty-three percent of ICU beds nationwide are likewise occupied, while half of the isolation beds are currently in use.
For the past week the country has been reporting record-high cases and deaths.
Meanwhile, hospitals in the capital region continue to be overwhelmed with fresh COVID-19 admissions, despite nearly two weeks since the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) was imposed in the region and nearby provinces of Rizal, Laguna, Cavite, and Bulacan.
The government is also distributing modular tents to struggling hospitals and re-deploying health workers from regions where virus transmission rates are low.
World Health Organization Representative to the Philippines Dr. Rabindra Abeyasinghe earlier told the government to focus and improve its virus response amid the spike in infections, and that it should not solely depend on COVID-19 vaccines.
The OCTA Research Group earlier said it estimates that the total number of cases will reach 1 million by the end of April.
As of April 6, nearly 923,000 doses of both Sinovac and AstraZeneca vaccines have been administered all over the country.
Worldwide, the coronavirus has already infected 134 million people, based on the running tally of US-based Johns Hopkins University.
Over 2.9 million have already died because of the respiratory disease, while more than 76 million have recovered, the same tally showed.
— With a report from Agence France-Presse