Philippines COVID-19 cases surpass 5,000 milestone, now highest in Southeast Asia


The number of COVID-19 cases in the country has reached 5,223 after the Department of Health (DOH) reported 291 new cases on Tuesday.

The DOH also reported 20 additional fatalities, bringing the total number of deaths to 335. The number of recoveries also rose to 295 after 53 patients were reported to have recovered from the disease.

The DOH reiterated a continued strengthening of the country’s healthcare system and said the government is focusing also in searching for a cure of the disease.

The health department also warned anew on the release of possible medicines not registered with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

“Sa kasalukuyan, nababalitaan po ang Prodex B at ang Fabunan antiviral injections na di umano ay mabisa laban sa COVID-19. Nagbigay na po ang FDA ng abiso sa kanila na kailangan nilang irehistro ang mga ito at patunayan sa FDA ang kanilang claims (Currently, there have been reports that Prodex B and Fabunan antiviral injections are allegedly effective in fighting COVID-19. The FDA has already released an advisory that they need to register those and to prove their claims),” DOH USec. Maria Rosario Vergeire said.

DOH USec. Maria Rosario Vergeire
DOH USec. Maria Rosario Vergeire reports on on COVID-19 updates

The DOH earlier said those who recover from COVID-19 have antibodies against the virus, and could also help those currently fighting the infection of COVID-19 through convalescent plasma therapy. It added the measure still requires extensive review.

Meanwhile, the health department emphasized the need to confirm the results of rapid antibody test kits through RT-PCR test kits and only licensed doctors must interpret the results given the possibility of false negative yields. (PTV)