MANILA (UPDATED)— The Philippines on Friday reported 20,336 more COVID-19 cases, with deaths counting more than 300, the highest in almost a month, the health department said.
Friday's number of cases is the 9th highest daily tally since the pandemic started, the ABS-CBN research and data teams said.
The country's total COVID-19 cases stood at 2,324,475, with active infections at 188,108 or 8.1 percent of the running tally.
The ABS-CBN Investigative and Research Group said the day's number of active cases is the 3rd highest recorded ever, just next to April 16's 190,962 active cases, adjusted for duplicate cases.
Positivity rate is at 26.6 percent based on the test results of 75,766 people on Wednesday, according to the Department of Health's (DOH) latest bulletin, equivalent to one positive result out of every 4 tests.
Experts earlier said community transmission of the more contagious Delta variant and the public's violation of health protocols have contributed to the country's record infections.
Philippines shifted to an alert level quarantine scheme on Thursday to halt the spread of COVID-19 cases while trying to revive the pandemic-battered economy.
There were also 310 new deaths, raising the total number of fatalities to 36,328. The Philippines breached the 36,000-mark on Thursday.
This is the 4th straight day that daily deaths were more than 200, data showed.
Friday's newly reported fatalities is the highest since Aug. 21, when the DOH confirmed 398 deaths, the ABS-CBN Investigative and Research Group said.
This is also the 5th highest since the pandemic began, next to the 317 deaths the DOH registered last Aug. 20, researchers said.
The newly confirmed fatalities included 176 cases first tagged as recoveries "after final validation," DOH said.
Recoveries climbed by 10,028 to 2,100,039. The number of new recuperations is expected to rise in the following days as more cases have been recorded in the past few weeks.
Four laboratories failed to submit data on time.
A total of 53 duplicates, 41 of which are recoveries, have been excluded from the running total.
Intensive care unit (ICU) beds in the capital region remained at 79 percent, while nationwide this is at 77 percent.
The ICU rates remained at high risk, according to ABS-CBN Data Analytics head Edson Guido.
The country's COVID-19 referral center earlier in the day said it was receiving reports of difficulties in securing hospital admission for coronavirus sufferers in some regions.
One Hospital Command Center receives about 400 to 500 calls for assistance a day, unchanged from August, one of its medical officer said.
The Philippines reported its biggest increase of 26,303 new infections last Saturday.