It has been four months since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the number of confirmed cases worldwide has just exceeded 1 million.

Out of the 1,011,490 recorded cases, there have been 210,186 recoveries, and 52,863 deaths globally, according to the Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering as of 7 a.m. (GMT +8).

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The United States has the highest number of infections with 242,182 confirmed cases. Meanwhile, the Philippines has logged a total of 2,633 confirmed cases as of writing.

COVID-19 in the Philippines, Southeast Asia

According to a report by the De La Salle University Southeast Asia Research Center and Hub, the Phillipines has the third highest percentage of deaths (107 out of the 2,633) among seven Southeast Asian countries with reported mortalities. Percentage of recovery is at 1.94%, the lowest among the eight countries who have reported recoveries in the region.

As of April 2, the following venues have been converted into quarantine centers to accommodate COVID-19 patients in Metro Manila: the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex, World Trade Center, and Philippine International Convention Center.

To keep track of the spread of the virus locally, the University of the Philippines created a dashboard hosted on endcov.ph that tallies the confirmed, recovered, and deceased COVID-19 cases in the country. It also breaks the data down to how many cases each city in NCR has, how many are in each age group, and how many there are by sex.

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COVID-19 Outbreak Prevention

Aside from the rules of the enhanced community quarantine, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles declared in a virtual press briefing that residents of Luzon are now required by the government to wear face masks in public to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

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This policy was adopted by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID). 

During the World Health Organization's media briefing on COVID-19 on April 1, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in his opening remarks that "WHO's priority is that frontline health workers are able to access essential personal protective equipment, including medical masks and respirators.

"That's why we are continuing to work with governments and manufacturers to step up the production and distribution of personal protective equipment, including masks.

"There's an ongoing debate about the use of masks at the community level. WHO recommends the use of medical masks for people who are sick and those caring for them. However, in these circumstances, masks are only effective when combined with other protective measures."

To protect yourself and your loved ones from getting infected, aside from physical distancing, avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth before washing your hands with soap and water, or cleaning them with an alcohol-based hand rub.

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