The Philippines Department of Health (DOH) reported an additional 1,768 new confirmed COVID-19 cases today, bringing the country total to 439,834.

Philippines COVID-19: 1,768 new confirmed cases, Police to enforce social distancing with rattan sticks in Manila
Image/ via wikimedia commons

Quezon City recorded the most new cases with 112 infections, followed by Laguna with 94, Rizal with 90, Davao City with 71, and Benguet with 69.

DOH also reports 408,634 of the cases have recovered to date, of 92.9 percent of those who tested positive.

29 additional deaths were recorded, bringing the total deaths on the archipelago to 8554.

In Manila earlier late last week, in an effort to enforce social distancing, police will be armed with “rattan sticks” in public areas in Metro Manila.

“We have doubled the deployment of cops and soldiers would also assist us in physical distancing patrols. This was what our chief PNP (Philippine National Police), Gen. Debold Sinas ordered. They have one-meter rattan sticks to enforce the physical distancing rule,” Lt. Gen. Cesar Hawthorne Binag said.

In addition, Binag said chiefs of police are also tasked to coordinate with the management of establishments such as shopping centers to ensure the enforcement of health protocols in malls, especially this holiday season.

PNP will also enforce 30 percent capacity rule in places of worship over the Christmas season in addition to strictly enforcing the “no-caroling” and “no Christmas party” policy to avoid mass gatherings.

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Aquilino Managbanag

By Aquilino Managbanag

Aquilino Managbanag EXPERIENCE: Four years at The Asian Pacific Post, a weekly Canadian newspaper founded in 1993 in Vancouver, British Columbia. The newspaper specialized in reporting Asian issues, and has a readership of 160,000. It has a sister publication in The South Asian Post. EDUCATION: University of Santo Tomas – Manila -- The private Roman Catholic research university is Asia’s oldest existing university. The university takes pride in keeping the Catholic faith and beliefs prominent while holding true to its centuries-old tradition of academic excellence.