MANILA, Philippines — New coronavirus disease (COVID-19) hotspots are emerging in parts of Central and Eastern Visayas after seeing a rise in number of infections, the Department of Health said.
Metro Manila, which accounts for half of the country’s confirmed 32,295 cases, is still considered the epicenter of the nation’s outbreak.
But in a press briefing Wednesday, DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire identified Cebu City, Cebu province, Ormoc City, Southern Leyte, Leyte and Samar as emerging COVID-19 hotspots.
“Di pa ganun karami ang kaso sa mga nasabing lugar ngunit nakikita na natin na mas mabilis nang tumataas kumpara sa ibang lugar,” Vergeire said.
(Confirmed cases in those areas are not that high but we are seeing a rapid increase compared with other areas.)
Cebu City, which will be under enhanced community quarantine at least until end-June, had 4,160 cases as of June 23—3,779 of which were active cases. It is now the city with the highest number of COVID-19 cases in the country.
data from the DOH also showed that Cebu province—excluding the cities of Cebu, Mandaue and Lapu-Lapu—had 883 cases. Some 488 cases were detected in Mandaue City, while 276 were detected in Lapu-Lapu City.
A total of 130 infections were reported in Leyte, 61 in Samar, 38 in Ormoc City and 33 in Southern Leyte.
“Kailangan nating ituon ang atensyon sa lugar na ito upang mapigilan pa ang paglobo ng mga kaso at di natin ma-overwhelm ang health system sa mga nasabing lugar,” Vergeire said.
(We need to focus our attention in these areas to prevent cases from ballooning and avoid overwhelming their health systems).
Vergeire said the national government has sent medical supplies and equipment to Cebu province to ramp up its testing capacity and called for the strict implementation of public health standards in these emerging hotspots.
The DOH logged 357 additional cases Wednesday, taking the national caseload to 32,295.
Of the figure, 8,656 have recovered, while 1,204 have died.
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