In the Department of Health (DOH) 83rd issue Beat COVID-19 Today: Philippine Situationer posted on July 19, the Health agency reported 65,304 confirmed cases, with 41,464 active cases (63.4%), but total positive individuals have reached 89,387 as of July 18. The discrepancy between those who have tested positive and those the DOH have confirmed has reached 24,083.

The total number of recoveries is now at 22,087 while deaths have reached 1,773.


Validation backlogs

On a note in the total positive individuals, the DOH said “the discrepancy does not necessarily reflect the backlogs in case validation.”

The discrepancy between positive and confirmed cases has been known as the validation backlogs when it was first highlighted when a then-record-high cases was reported towards the end of May. This prompted the DOH to differentiate late and fresh cases, representing testing backlogs. The difference between confirmed cases and those who tested positive was also questioned, the department then addressed validation backlogs. By that time, validation backlogs have been accumulating for a month.

The department targeted to clear the validation backlogs in early June.

“Kapag dumating na po ang kumpletong line list na ‘to mula sa natitirang apat na laboratoryo, mava-validate na po natin lahat ng natitirang kaso at mauubos na po natin ang mga cases for validation na hindi pa naipapasok sa ating official count,” said DOH Usec. Maria Rosario Vergeire during the DOH virtual briefing on June 2.

(Once the remaining four laboratories submit their complete line list, we will be able to validate the remaining cases and clear the backlog.)

The DOH has just then reported on May 31  that they have cleared the validation backlogs for 27 of 41 laboratories than time.


Testing data

The DOH reported that 1,142,165 total tests have been conducted while 1,063,530 individuals have been tested. The 89,387 who have tested positive represented 8.4% of all those tested in the country’s 67 licensed RT-PCR and 22 licensed GeneXpert laboratories.

Most tests were conducted in the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) with 142,548 individuals tested and 10% positivity rate.

Testing backlogs – samples not yet tested or results not yet released after three days – were noted in at least seven laboratories. Currently, the RITM has the most testing backlogs at 2,666, followed by the Western Visayas Medical Center with 1,100.


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