COVID19: One case reported as Cyprus unlocks

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Cyprus is on track for zero new COVID-19 cases as it recorded just one case on Thursday as it kicked off the second stage out of lockdown.

The new infection takes the total of COVID-19 cases since the outbreak began on March 9 to 923 (including 12 in the British Bases).

Daily cases have remained stable in single-digit figures all through May, with Thursday’s data proving that Cyprus has all but conquered the virus for now.

Thursday’s case was identified after 2,647 tests were carried out — the best results since the start of the pandemic.

The case was identified among 203 tests conducted on tracing contacts of known cases. The case involves a staff member at a kindergarten in Paphos, where another case was found last week.

Meanwhile, as announced by the health services, some 215 tests were carried out on school students and teachers among whom no new cases were found.

Health Ministry experts presenting Thursday’s data were pleased to report the number of cases is within the expected range.

Member of the Epidemiological Monitoring Unit and virologist Dr Leontios Kostrikis said: “We have every reason to be satisfied with the results of today’s diagnostic tests.

The close to zero numbers is an indication of efforts put in, but these efforts now need to be protected by continuing to adhere to decrees issued and hygiene measures”.

He said that scientists are hoping that in the coming days they will be in a position to announce zero cases.

On Thursday, four people were inpatients at Famagusta General, which operates as the COVID-19 reference hospital.

One patient, in a stable condition, is being treated at the hospital’s Acute Care Unit (ACU).

Two patients are breathing with the help of a ventilator, all at Nicosia General Hospital ICU.

Another two patients at Nicosia General ICU are currently being treated without being intubated.

The condition of all patients in the ICUs is described as “critical but stable.”

Dr Marios Loizou of the Cyprus State Health Services Organisation urged the public to continue adhering to measures and decrees.

He noted that while the pandemic seems to be in remission in many countries, however, in countries in South America and Africa the virus is spreading at a rapid pace.

“Just in the past 24 hours, Brazil reported 20,000 cases, the same as the USA, while a total of 106,000 cases was recorded across the globe, the highest number of cases reported in a single day,” said Dr Loizou.

He said this should act as a reminder that the virus has yet to be eliminated and is still present even in Cyprus.