The Philippines logged the biggest number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in a single day on Thursday, ahead of President Rodrigo Duterte's decision on the state of nationwide virus quarantines. Recoveries were also at a single-day record, the Department of Health (DOH) said.
The 3,954 confirmed infections brought the total to 89,374. Of the 3,954, 1,320 were "fresh" or newly confirmed, while 2,634 were reported late. There were 38,075 new recoveries, bringing the total recoveries to 65,064. Deaths rose to 1,983, according to DOH data.
Data was reconciled to reflect a new system wherein patients with mild or no symptoms 14 days from the onset of signs or date of specimen collection were tagged as recovered. This accounted for 37,166 of the total recoveries, the DOH said. On the tenth day of illness, the risk of transmission is "significantly reduced," the department said citing protocols in the US, Europe and India.
The same enhanced date reconciliation efforts also caused the biggest jump in a single day for new cases.
Metro Manila and most of the country are under the two lowest quarantines, GCQ (general community quarantine) and MGCQ (modified general community quarantine) until Friday. Only one area, Cebu City, is under the second highest, MECQ (modified enhanced community quarantine).
Ahead of Duterte's decision, the government announced that more businesses would be allowed to reopen in GCQ and MGCQ areas, including gyms and nail spas. Authorities in charge of the pandemic have also pointed to pooled testing and targeted lockdowns as among the ways forward.