Covid-19: Philippines is now the epicenter in Southeast Asia

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METRO MANILA – Despite implementing the longest, strictest lockdown in Southeast Asia, the Philippines now has the most coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases in the region with more than 119,000 cases.

The Department of Health (DOH) reported 3,561 new cases that overtakes Indonesia in terms of total COVID-19 cases in the region.

With Metro Manila now being the epicenter of the outbreak in the country, the country’s total death increased to 2,150 with 28 additional reported while recovery rose to 66,837.

This has prompted the national government to put Metro Manila and provinces such as Laguna, Cavite, Rizal, and Bulacan to revert back to a more stricter modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) until August 18 after the medical frontliners requested a ‘time out’ from the exhaustion of accomodating rising cases of the infection.

After implementing the strict lockdown from March to May, the country re-opened its capital that led to the surge of infections to 500% in over two months before the government were able to revert the lockdown this week.

The reimposed lockdown has resulted to the country’s economy to suffer the deepest contraction ever recorded to 16.5% in the 2nd quarter compared to the year prior.

According to the country’s Anti-Covid Czar Vince Dizon, the increased in Covid-19 cases were attributed to the country’s efforts of ramping up the mass testing. DOH reported that as of Aug. 4, 1,643,539 covid-19 test has been conducted with an daily average of 28,938 tests.

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