Manila [Philippines], October 1 (ANI/Xinhua): The Philippines' Department of Health (DOH) reported 15,566 new COVID-19 infections on Friday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the Southeast Asian country to 2,565,487.
The DOH also reported that 199 more people died from COVID-19 complications, pushing the country's death toll to 38,493.
The Philippines, which has around 110 million population, has tested nearly 20 million people since the outbreak in January 2020.
The DOH said that Metro Manila will remain under alert level 4, the second-highest alert level, till October 15.
"Metro Manila is currently under moderate risk case classification, but the intensive care utilization is still under the high-risk category," the DOH said in a statement. It added that the region's intensive care unit utilization is 76.8 per cent, and the total COVID-19 bed utilization rate is 62.6 per cent.
Home to over 13 million people, Metro Manila, the region with the most active and daily cases in the Philippines, has been under strict lockdown restrictions as the country battles COVID-19 infections.
Meanwhile, the DOH urged the local government units in Metro Manila to ramp up active case detection by implementing granular or targeted lockdowns to curb the transmission in communities and households.
The government extended the alert level in Metro Manila as the inter-agency coronavirus task force further assesses and analyzes the processes and strategies undertaken by local government units.
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said that the task force has also decided to ease the restrictions on some businesses while providing perks to those already vaccinated against COVID-19.
In a statement on late Thursday, Roque said the task force approved the proposal to expand by an additional 10 per cent the allowable indoor capacities of dine-in services, in-person religious services, and personal care services in Metro Manila for those fully vaccinated. (ANI/Xinhua)