December 19, 2023
MANILA, Philippines — The daily confirmed COVID-19 infections nationwide rose by 50 percent over the past week, data from the Department of Health (DOH) showed.
The seven-day average cases rose from 260 to 389, according to the latest DOH weekly bulletin.
Of the 2,725 individuals found positive for the virus based on laboratory tests last week, 16 were in severe or critical condition.
Sixteen more people died of COVID-19 this December, the DOH said.
This brought the official COVID-19 death toll to 66,795 out of 4.1 million confirmed infections since the pandemic began in early 2020.
The national average hospital bed occupancy for COVID-19 cases nevertheless remained at low risk.
The DOH reported that allotted intensive care unit (ICU) beds and non-ICU beds for COVID-19 patients are 12.9 percent and 18.3 percent occupied.
At least 1,983 COVID-19 patients are currently admitted, including 211 patients who are in serious or critical condition.
The admissions comprise about 45 percent of at least 4,334 individuals known to have been infected with the virus as of Dec. 15.
However, health authorities have allayed concerns over the “slight uptick” in detected COVID-19 cases in recent weeks.
On Friday, Health Secretary Teodoro Herbosa said the recent number of cases was not much higher compared to the number of cases reported in the same period last year.
Nevertheless, the DOH advised the public to continue wearing face masks when in public and to choose well-ventilated places.