MANILA - The Philippines confirmed 5,479 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday bringing the country’s total to 1,548,755.
The Department of Health also reported 5,573 new recoveries, pushing the total number of Filipinos who recovered from the disease to 1,467,269.
This means that the country has a total of 54,262 active cases as of 4 p.m. Sunday.
Ninety three more deaths were reported from the illness, bringing COVID-19’s death toll in the Philippines to 27,224.
The arrival in the country of the more contagious Delta variant of the virus that causes COVID-19, has caused worries among experts, with some saying that Metro Manila is seeing the early stages of a new surge.
A government scientist said the Delta variant can infect up to 8 people at a time, who in turn can each infect 8 others.
Meanwhile the country struggles to ramp up its vaccine rollout. The government has said that it wants to inoculate 58 million Filipinos by the end of the year, down from an initial 70 million target.
ABS-CBN News however has been tracking the number of vaccinations since March, and as of July 22, only 5,560,029 Filipinos have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19. This means that the government has reached just 9.59 percent of the revised target after more than 4 months.
President Rodrigo Duterte meanwhile has denied that there is a shortage of COVID-19 vaccines in the country, instead blaming local government units for problems in vaccination scheduling.
The pandemic has already caused the Philippines to plunge into its worst economic contraction since World War 2, losing over P2 trillion in value in the 15 months since the virus started affecting the country.
Worldwide, the novel coronavirus has infected over 193 million people and caused over 4.1 million deaths since it was first reported in Wuhan, China in late 2019 according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center.
The United States remains the most badly affected country with over 34 million infections and over 610,000 deaths.
India is the second most badly affected country, with 31 million infections. But in terms of deaths, Brazil has recorded more fatalities than India, with the South American country reporting over 549,000 COVID-19 deaths against India’s 420,000 confirmed fatalities.
The country’s first COVID-19 case was a 38-year-old Chinese woman from Wuhan, China.
The first COVID-19 death outside of China, was also recorded in the Philippines last year.