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COVID cases near 440,000, recoveries at over 408,000

CORONAVIRUS cases increased by 1,768 on Sunday, bringing the total to 439, 834, according to the Department of Health’s (DoH) daily report.

The number of new recoveries, usually higher on Sundays than the rest of the week, reached 9,062 for a total of 408,634.

The death toll rose by 29 to 8,554.

There were 22,646 active cases, 6.1% of which were critical, 6.2% did not show symptoms, 3.1% were severe, and 0.345 were moderate.

Quezon City reported the highest number of cases at 112, followed by Laguna at 94, Rizal at 90, Davao City at 71, and Benguet at 69.

The DoH said three duplicates were removed from the total case count, while 10 cases previously tagged as recovered were reclassified as deaths.

Twelve laboratories were not able to submit their data on Saturday, it added.

VACCINE TRANSPORT
Meanwhile, Quezon City 2nd District Rep. Precious H. Castelo urged the government to tap local air carriers for the transport and delivery of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccines into and around the country.

“I am assuming that we will get the vaccines from where they are being produced. Instead of foreign carriers, let us use local airlines to help them earn more at this time of pandemic so they would keep their employees,” she said in a statement over the weekend.

Ms. Castelo said foreign airlines could be tapped if their Filipino counterparts could not meet the logistical requirements for transporting the vaccines.

“It would take more than 50 Boeing 777 freighters to fly 60 million doses to Manila,” she said.

When the vaccines arrive in the country, the next challenge is transporting these to the different regions, provinces, cities, and towns, which would also require the use of local airlines, she added.

“The government can help them avoid shedding more manpower if it can engage their services in the delivery of the vaccine,” the lawmaker said.

The three main air service providers in the country are PAL Holdings, Inc., Cebu Pacific Air, Inc., and Philippines Air Asia, Inc. — Kyle Aristophere T. Atienza

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