May 20, 2020 / 8:17 AM / 15 days ago

Philippines reports 279 additional new coronavirus cases, five deaths

FILE PHOTO: A elderly man wearing a protective mask carries a take-away bag as he rides an escalator inside a shopping mall, which has reopened after two months as lockdown restrictions ease amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines, May 17, 2020. REUTERS/Eloisa Lopez

MANILA (Reuters) - The Philippines’ health ministry on Wednesday recorded 279 additional confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus, the highest daily increase in nine days, and five additional deaths.

In a bulletin, the ministry said total deaths had reached 842, while infections have risen to 13,221, with total recoveries rising 89 to 2,932.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque told a senate panel on Wednesday that the country is already facing a second wave of infections, with the first occurring in January when three Chinese from Wuhan tested positive of the virus.

Reporting by Neil Jerome Morales and Karen Lema; Editing by Ed Davies

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