MANILA — The Philippines reached a new peak of COVID-19-related fatalities in August, exceeding the death toll recorded in April, the Department of Health said Monday.
The country recorded an average of 155 coronavirus deaths per day in August, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said. In April, an average of 135 people died from the respiratory disease.
"At the national level, deaths have been increasing since the last week of July and the new peak was seen mid-August," Vergeire said in a press briefing. "With incoming deaths report, current numbers are still expected to increase."
The health official explained that the deaths could not be directly attributed to the country's health systems capacity.
Based on trends, those at higher risk of dying from COVID-19 were the elderly and those with comorbidities, she said.
"The most plausible explanation for now, the numbers of deaths are increasing because the cases are increasing also," Vergeire said.
According to DOH, the country has also recorded an average of 99 deaths per day from Sept. 1 to 19.
"We are closely monitoring Regions 3, 4A, the National Capital Region; Regions 7, 2, 6, 1 and CAR as these regions posted the highest total deaths for the first 2 weeks of September," Vergeire said.
"Their average daily deaths also show an increasing trend since August."
Since the pandemic began last year, some 36,934 people have succumbed to COVID-19.