Philippines extends restrictions, Laos concerned about COVID-19 community transmission hinh anh 1An area for COVID-19 treatment in Manila, the Philippines (Photo: AFP/VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – The Philippine Government has extended coronavirus restrictions in several regions while some provinces in Laos have put lockdown on certain districts in the face of community transmission of COVID-19.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on August 28 extended the second-highest level of quarantine curbs in the Manila capital region until September 7, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in a statement.

Although some businesses can operate at up to 50 percent of on-site capacity, restaurant dine-in, personal care services, and religious activities are still prohibited in the capital region, which is the country's coronavirus epicenter with a third of the total confirmed infections and a quarter of the total deaths.

Nine provinces and six cities facing a surge in cases were also placed under the second-tightest coronavirus curbs.

The Philippines’ Department of Health reported 19,441 new COVID-19 cases on August 28, a record-high for the third time in the past nine days. Total confirmed cases have risen to more than 1.93 million, while deaths have reached 33,008, after 167 more fatalities were recorded.

The country’s government is pinning its hopes for an economic recovery on its inoculation programme, which started in March.

The Philippines has so far secured a total of 194.89 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines, enough to inoculate about 100.5 million Filipinos or more than 100 percent of its adult population. About 49 million doses have arrived in the country, while 42 million more are expected to be delivered within the next one month. 

In Laos, the Ministry of Health on August 29 announced 195 new infections recorded in 24 hours, including 97 imported cases quarantined upon their arrival.

The new cases were seen in 12 provincial-level localities. Savannakhet province still posted the highest number of community transmissions, 57, followed by Bokeo province with 15 cases.

The ministry said Vientiane capital city logged 12 domestic infections in one day, leading to a rebound in the number of “red zones”.

Meanwhile, the administrations of Oudomxay and Salavan provinces have decided to put lockdown on some districts after recording virus community transmissions.

The number of COVID-19 cases in Laos currently stands at 14,661, including 12 fatalities./.