COVID19: Cyprus hospital patients getting younger

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Patients now being treated for coronavirus at Cyprus’ COVID-referral hospital are getting younger showing the virus does not only adversely affect the elderly, a senior scientist warned.

Following the admission of a 24-year-old footballer to Famagusta General on Monday, hospital officials say that half of the patients currently in the facility are under 45.

In comments to the Cyprus News Agency, Famagusta General’s chief scientist Amalia Hadjiyianni said the rise of coronavirus cases that need hospital care is alarming, highlighting that younger people are not immune to the virus.

On Tuesday, there were 16 patients at Famagusta General Hospital, four of them in the Acute Care Unit (ACU).

Around 50% of those patients are under 45 years of age, including the footballer.

“This sends the message that coronavirus can infect any of us. Anyone, with no exception, regardless of age and health status, can develop coronavirus symptoms.”

Hadjiyianni expressed concern over the double-digit number of COVID-19 patients admitted to the referral hospital.

She said such numbers “have not been recorded since April” and an indication that the virus is spreading within the community.

The expert argued the public should be worried over the increase in cases and become more vigilant in adhering to all protocols.

Famagusta General’s chief scientist said the medical community is all the wiser six months into the pandemic and is better prepared to deal with these cases, than when the pandemic started.

“The experience we all gained, doctors and nursing staff was quite good so that today we can treat coronavirus patients from both the psychological and pharmaceutical aspects.”

On recent protests by some doctors, nurses and paramedics that Famagusta General is the COVID-19 reference hospital once again, Hadjiyianni said staff were afraid this would stigmatise the hospital and keep other patients away.

“Superhuman efforts by the medical staff have rebuilt patients trust towards the hospital”.

Since July, the median age of coronavirus cases in Cyprus of COVID-19 cases remains relatively young at 31.