PH records 9,661 new COVID-19 cases and nearly 23,000 new recoveries

Job Manahan, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 24 2021 04:22 PM | Updated as of Apr 24 2021 05:50 PM

PH records 9,661 new COVID-19 cases and nearly 23,000 new recoveries 1
Residents start lining up for the government’s financial assistance payout at the covered court of Barangay Tibaguin, Hagonoy, Bulacan on April 20, 2021. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

 ICU utilization rate in NCR down by 11 pct

MANILA (UPDATE) — The Philippines logged 9,661 additional COVID-19 cases and nearly 23,000 new recoveries, according to the Department of Health (DOH) on Saturday. 

Saturday's fresh infections pushed the country's overall tally to 989,380 with 89,485 remaining active cases. 

This is the 6th straight day that additional cases did not exceed 10,000, data collated by the ABS-CBN Investigative and Research Group showed. 

ABS-CBN Data Analytics head Edson Guido also said the day's active cases is the lowest since March 23. 

The day's active cases is also drastically lower from last Saturday's record-high 203,000 as the DOH reported thousands of new recoveries daily this week, veering away from weekly "mass recoveries" every Sunday.

Of those still battling the disease, some 95.9 percent are experiencing mild symptoms, 1.4 percent are asymptomatic, 1.1 percent are severely ill, while 0.8 percent are in critical condition. 

Recoveries climbed to 883,221 after 22,877 more patients recuperated from the respiratory disease, accounting for 89.3 percent of the country's total recorded cases.

COVID-related deaths, meanwhile, increased by 145 to 16,674. 

This is the 4th straight day that new deaths counted more than 100.

Out of the 38,640 individuals who underwent testing for COVID-19 on Friday noon, 16.3 percent were found positive for the virus. 

The health department noted that a total of 56 cases initially tagged as recoveries turned out to be fatalities after their final validation. 

Some 21 duplicate cases were also removed from the country's overall tally. Twelve of those were recoveries, said the DOH. 

Five laboratories failed to submit results on time, while a laboratory was not operational on Thursday. 

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 ICU UTILIZATION RATE IN NCR DROPS TO 71 PCT

Based on the latest bulletin, the use of COVID-dedicated intensive care unit (ICU) beds in Metro Manila is down to 71 percent from 82 percent on Friday, or 11 points lower. 

The health department is yet to respond on media's queries regarding the matter. 

Isolation bed occupancy in the capital region remains at 59 percent, while ward beds and ventilators are 66 percent and 59 percent occupied, respectively. 

Nationwide, ICU beds are 63 percent filled up. Isolation beds are also 48 percent utilized. 

Ward beds and ventilators across the country remain 53 percent and 46 percent occupied. 

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire earlier in the day noted a slight decline of new coronavirus infections in the past week, after stricter lockdowns were reintroduced in Metro Manila and four nearby provinces Rizal, Bulacan, Laguna, and Cavite — known collectively as the "NCR Plus" bubble. 

Hospitals around the metro, however, have earlier said they still feel overwhelmed with the number of COVID-19 cases even as the government has expanded capacity. 

In early April, the government also provided modular tents to some hospitals struggling to cope with fresh admissions due to COVID-19. 

Hospital workers from the low-risk areas in the countries were also sent to the NCR Plus bubble to aid strained health facilities. 

As of April 22, around 1,612,420 doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered out of the 3,025,600 vaccines distributed across LGUs. The government seeks to vaccinate 70 million of the country's population to achieve herd immunity.