June 1, 2020 – 5:08pm
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines said its caseload of novel coronavirus infections reached 18,638 Monday as Metro Manila and other areas at high-risk of virus transmission shifted to a more relaxed community quarantine that allowed more businesses to reopen and workers to return to their jobs.
The Department of Health reported 552 new cases. Of the additional cases, 119 were classified “fresh” or test results that were released to patients in the last three days, while 433 were “late” cases from the agency’s testing backlog.
The total number of patients who have survived COVID-19 increased to 3,979 with the recovery of 70 more patients.
But fatalities related to COVID-19 also rose to 960 after three fatalities were added to the toll.
Metro Manila—home to more than 12 million people and the epicenter of the nation’s outbreak—transitioned to the more relaxed general community quarantine Monday. After nearly three months, workers in the capital region returned to their jobs that were shut by virus lockdown and dealt with limited public transit.
In easing one of the world’s longest lockdowns, the DOH said the slower case and mortality doubling time and the critical care utilization rate guided the decision of the government.
The novel coronavirus pandemic has infected at least 6.1 million people and killed over 367,000 since it first emerged in China in December last year.