DOH reports 102 more COVID-19 deaths, explains delay in release of figures


The Department of Health (DOH) confirmed on Tuesday, Sept. 28, another 102 deaths related to coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

The new cases brought the country's total number of COVID-19 deaths since the pandemic began to 37,596.

It noted that the newly announced deaths were part of the data backlog after its data collecting system experienced a technical glitch.

There were zero deaths recorded last Sept. 24 to Sept. 26 due to errors in the COVIDKaya system, the DOH said.

“As the technical team continues to manually encode data on fatalities reported from previous days, further advisories will be issued,” the DOH said.

As of Sept. 27, the country's total case count stood at 2,509,177. Of the figure, 2,313,412 have recovered while 158,169 are active or patients who are still being treated.

Technical issue

DOH Epidemiology Bureau Director Dr. Alethea De Guzman explained that they were not able to report deaths from Sept. 24 to 26 after its system called COVIDKaya experienced a "downtime."

"This system downtime resulted to rejected data pushed from the COVID Document Repository System (CDRS), the COVIDKaya user interface being inaccessible to the end users either to encode new cases or update existing ones, inability to extract updated data for linelist generation," she said during an online forum.

De Guzman said that the system downtime was “mainly due to the limited server capacity of COVIDKaya to handle, receive, and process bulk data pushed from the CDRS.”

“The COVIDKaya downtime delayed the encoding and validation process of deaths,” she added.

De Guzman said that they are currently working with the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) to fix the technical issue in their system.

No impact in assessing Alert Level

The technical issue in the system did not affect the reporting of new COVID-19 cases, said De Guzman.

She added that the glitch will not have a negative impact in the government’s assessment of the Alert level system in Metro Manila.

“Dito naman sa alert level system natin, ang metrics na ginamit natin ay yung dami ng kaso and the healthcare utilization. Yung healthcare utilization (Here in our alert level system, the metrics we use are the number of cases and the healthcare utilization. When it comes to healthcare utilization)--- it is a different information system,” said De Guzman.

“When it comes to case data, hindi siya naapektuhan kasi may access pa rin tayo sa CDRS (it was not affected because we still have access to CDRS), which is where we get the number of new cases. So nakakapag compute pa rin tayo kung ilan ang bagong kaso, ano yung two-week growth rate, and average daily attack rate (So we were able to still compute the number of new cases, what is the two-week growth rate, and average daily attack rate),” she added.

“It had no impact in the assessment or in the computation of metrics that we use in assessing kung ano yung (what will be the) alert level classification for the National Capital Region,” she furthered.