A man walks by a pharmacy selling medical gears in Santiago, Chile, May 26, 2020. (Photo by Jorge Villegas/Xinhua)

The lockdown in the capital Santiago and the metropolitan area, home to 7 million people, which was due to be lifted on May 29, has been indefinitely extended due to spikes in the number of infections.

SANTIAGO, May 28 (Xinhua) -- Chile on Thursday said a total of 86,943 people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus and 890 have died from the disease.

In the 24-hour period ending 9 p.m. Wednesday, healthcare workers detected 4,654 new cases and 49 more patients died, the largest number in a single day since the start of the outbreak.

Of the new cases, 4,128 showed symptoms and 526 were asymptomatic. Some 36,150 COVID-19 patients have recovered.

According to Health Minister Jaime Manalich, 3,707 healthcare workers have contracted COVID-19, with "a very small number of them requiring hospitalization."

The lockdown in the capital Santiago and the metropolitan area, home to 7 million people, which was due to be lifted on May 29, has been indefinitely extended due to spikes in the number of infections.

"There continue to be many social gatherings. If each of us is not convinced of the social distancing measures, this is going to be prolonged," Manalich said.

In other parts of the country, some communities are just imposing lockdowns while others are beginning to relax theirs.  ■

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