Philippines Has Second-Highest COVID-19 Fatality Rate in Southeast Asia

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The Philippines currently has the second highest rate of fatalities due to COVID-19 in Southeast Asia. 

According to a new website that tracks data related to the coronavirus pandemic in the country and elsewhere in the world, the Philippines currently has 7,958 confirmed cases of COVID-19. Of that number, 530 have died, which translates to a case fatality rate (CFR) of 6.66 percent. The number is based on data from the Department of Health as of April 28.

The website tracker defines CFR as the proportion of deaths from COVID-19 compared to the total number of people diagnosed with the disease since the start of the outbreak.

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Only Indonesia has a higher CFR in the region, at 8.13 percent (9,511 cases, 773 deaths).

Those numbers are far above the ASEAN average of 2.79 percent, but below the global average of 6.97 percent.

In the region, Vietnam and Cambodia have reported zero deaths from COVID-19, which puts their CFR also at zero.


Of the countries that have reported fatalities, Singapore is the lowest at 0.09 percent (14,951 cases, 14 deaths), followed by Brunei at 0.72 percent (138 cases, 1 death), and Malaysia at 1.71 percent (5,851 cases, 100 deaths).

On the flipside, the Philippines currently has one of the lowest case recovery rates (CRR) in the region at 12.25 percent (975 recoveries).

CRR is the proportion of recovered patients from COVID-19 compared to the total number of people diagnosed with the disease since the start of the outbreak.

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Only Singapore currently has a lower CRR, at 7.54 percent, but this is likely because of a renewed surge in cases in recent weeks. The city-state reports that only 1,128 so far have recovered out of its total number of confirmed cases.

According to Mikko Gozalo, creator of the tracker, what sets his website apart from other trackers is “the ability to compare the metrics of the Philippines over other countries. We focus on comparing them to the ASEAN region as they're basically our neighbors.”

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Gozalo adds that the website was created with mobile users in mind, with attention given to bandwidth usage, so it would not hog users’ mobile data quota, given that a vast majority of internet users in the Philippines consume information through their mobile phones.

The tracker has arrived at some interesting facts based on the data it has collected. It takes 25.6 days for the number of confirmed cases in the Philippines to double based on the seven-day average daily growth rate of 2.71 percent. A total of 1,434 healthcare workers have been affected by COVID-19 as of Apr 27, representing 18.4 percent of confirmed cases. And with 73.6 people infected per million residents, the Philippines ranks 110th out of 185 countries when measured by the number of COVID-19 confirmed cases per one million residents of the country.

Cities with most and least number of cases

The tracker has also listed the cities with the most and least COVID cases in the country.

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In absolute numbers, Quezon City has the most confirmed cases at 1,209 with 93 deaths and 169 recoveries, followed by Manila (628 cases, 45 deaths, 84 recoveries) and Cebu City (415 cases, 5 deaths, 12 recoveries). 

In terms of COVID-19 cases relative to its population, San Juan is first with 219 cases out of 122,000 residents (0.18 percent); followed by Mandaluyong with 354 out of 386,000 residents (0.09 percent); and Makati with 391 cases out of 582,000 residents (0.06 percent).

In the Visayas, Cebu City is followed by Lapu-Lapu, Cebu (34 cases, 0 deaths, 1 receovery) and Bacolod (10 cases, 2 deaths, 2 recoveries) in most numbers of cases, while in Mindanao, Davao City is on top with 110 cases, 18 deaths and 56 recoveries, followed by Tagum City, Davao Del Norte (35 cases, 0 deaths, 7 recoveries) and Zamboanga City (9 cases, 2 deaths, 3 recoveries).

Data from this new website tracker is taken from Department of Health’s nCOV tracker and the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center.

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Paul John Caña
Associate Editor, Esquire Philippines
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