The Philippines on Tuesday logged 15,789 new COVID-19 infections as the World Health Organization reminded world leaders that the risk from the omicron surge remained high.
The day's tally brought active cases to 230,410 with a total of 32,712 new recoveries and 66 new deaths reported.
Overall, a total of 3,475,293 COVID-19 cases have been reported since the pandemic began in March 2020, of which 3,191,219 have recovered and 53,664 died.
"Over 21 million new cases were reported, representing the highest number of weekly cases recorded since the beginning of the pandemic," the World Health Organization said in its weekly epidemiological coronavirus update.
New infections increased by 5% in the week to Sunday -- compared to the 20% rise registered the week before, it added.
A new lineage of the omicron, called "stealth omicron" or BA.2, has been detected in the Philippines. Compared to the BA.1 lineage, it is not as easily detectable via RT-PCR tests, which is considered the gold standard in COVID testing. The Department of Health earlier said it would study how the newly detected lineage affects transmission.
"Walang nakitang significant difference sa clinical presentation ang BA.1 at BA.2 at kinakailangan pa rin po ng masusing pag-aaral dahil limitado pa rin naman ang ating mga obserbasyon na ating nakukuha dito," Health Usec. Rosario Vergeire said on Tuesday.
Stealth omicron is predominant in most regions in the country, said Vergeire. Unlike its predecessor delta, most omicron infections caused no symptoms to moderate symptoms, which can be treated at home, she added.