by: RJ Espartinez

The Philippines reported 552 new coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases — 119 “fresh” or newly validated and 433 reported late— elevating the total number of infections to 18,638, the Department of Health (DOH) announced on Monday, the first day of Metro Manila’s general community quarantine (GCQ).

94 patients of the fresh cases came from Metro Manila, 4 were repatriates, 1 came from Region VII, while the remaining 20 cases were spread out across the country.

137 late cases, on the other hand came from Metro Manila, 98 came from Region VII, 16 were repatriates while the remaining 182 patients were spread out across the country.

In a bit of good news, recoveries exceeded the 4,000 mark with 70 more patients winning the battle against COVID-19, bringing the country’s total recoveries to 3,979.

The DOH’s daily bulletin also confirmed 3 new deaths, inching the total to 960.

Currently, there are 13,220 active cases undertaking treatment or quarantine: 12,285 are mild, 859 are asymptomatic, 57 are severe and 19 are in critical condition.

Singapore remains on top in Southeast Asia for the most number of COVID-19 cases at 35,292. Indonesia followed behind with 26,940 with the Philippines on its tail.