MANILA - The Philippines confirmed 20,019 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday, bringing the country’s total to 2,080,984 as the more transmissible Delta variant continued to spread.
This was the third straight day that over 20,000 new infections were confirmed.
The Department of Health also reported 20,089 new recoveries, pushing the total number of Filipinos who recovered from the disease to 1,889,312.
This means that the country has a total of 157,438 active cases as of 4 p.m. Sunday.
One hundred seventy three more deaths were reported from COVID-19 on Sunday, bringing the disease’s death toll in the Philippines to 34,234.
An independent research group warned that confirmed cases may hit 30,000 daily by next week.
A DOH estimate meanwhile said as many as 43,000 daily cases may be reported in Metro Manila by the end of the month.
The country struggles to ramp up its vaccine rollout. The government has said that it wants to inoculate 70 million Filipinos by the end of the year.
ABS-CBN News however has been tracking the number of vaccinations since March, and as of Sept. 1, only 14 million Filipinos have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19. This means that the government has reached just 19.9 percent of the revised target after more than 6 months.
After plunging into its worst economic contraction since World War, the country emerged from recession in the second quarter.
Government economic managers however have lowered the growth target for the year, citing the tighter restrictions reimposed to check the spread of the Delta variant.
Worldwide, the novel coronavirus has infected almost 220 million people and caused 4.56 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 almost 40 million infections and over 648,000 deaths.
India is the second most badly affected country, with almost 33 million infections. But in terms of deaths, Brazil has recorded more fatalities than India, with the South American country reporting over 583,000 COVID-19 deaths against India’s 440,000 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.