By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

In a follow-up on the COVID-19 outbreak in the Philippines, the Department of Health (DOH) is reporting 1,418 total cases, nearly double the cases reported on Friday.

Municipalities reporting the most cases include Quezon City, San Juan City, Manila, Pasig City and Makati City, according to DOH data.

The death toll in the country has risen to 71, for a 5 percent case fatality rate.

However, officials with Malacañang say the implementation of month-long enhanced community quarantine in Luzon has helped the government prevent the further transmission of COVID-19.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo believed that COVID-19 cases in the country would have increased further had President Rodrigo failed to impose a Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine.

Panelo issued the statement after he learned that some critics claimed that the latest number of confirmed cases of Covid-19 in the country shows that enhanced community quarantine is “ineffective in flattening the curve.”

Blood flukes in Black and White

“We beg to disagree,” he said in a press statement. “Had the enhanced community quarantine or partial lockdown not been imposed, the number of the COVID-19 cases could have been staggering.”

Lastly, on March 23, President Rodrigo Duterte signed Administrative Order 26 which grants a “COVID-19 hazard pay” worth at the rate of PHP500 per day to government workers, including health workers, who physically report for work under the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine.

A total of PHP1-million will be given to all health workers who die while fighting the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic under Republic Act 11469 or Bayanihan to Health as One Act.