As Cyprus braces itself for stricter measures, health authorities announced the deaths of another three hospital patients who were being treated with COVID-19.
All three, two women and a man were being treated at Famagusta General’s Acute Care Unit.
The deaths of the two women, aged 86 and 80, were attributed directly to COVID-19 while the death of the man, 62, was caused by a pulmonary embolism due to other underlying health conditions.
The 86-year-old woman is the third person to die after being transferred from the Limassol’s Sokrateion care home where some 37 people including 20 residents were found positive to the virus.
According to a Health Ministry statement on Tuesday, the total number of deaths attributed directly to COVID-19 has risen to 29, 18 men and 11 women with an average age of 74 years.
To date, 38 deaths of people infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus have died in Cyprus, of which 76% (29 people) was due to COVID-19 and 24% (9) to other causes of death.
The three deaths come during a spike in cases with experts warning that if the virus is not contained, Cyprus will be mourning more dead.
Scientists have warned in the past few weeks that the surge in cases would inevitably lead to an increase in deaths, stressing that the increase in hospital admissions of COVID-19 patients is an indication of what is to come.
On Monday, the number of COVID-19 patients in hospitals continued to rise at a worrying pace reaching 85, putting a strain on the national health system.
This number increased from the 77 patients being treated in hospitals on Sunday, up from 69 on Saturday, that also saw a record daily number of cases at 314.
The government was set to introduce more measures, following a meeting between President Nicos Anastasiades and Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou, but any decision was postponed until Wednesday.
“We are trying to prevent the worse, we are concerned about the economy, the stress the public is under and the health situation in general,” Anastasiades told reporters Tuesday.
“We are deeply concerned by the surge, especially among young people, and what will happen if this affects elderly people and the strain this will cause on our hospitals.”
Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou tweeted Monday: “These are difficult times. We are doing all that his humanly possible to face the danger. Our priority remains the protection of public health.”
On Monday, Cyprus saw a drop in SARS-CoV-2 cases to 111, slightly down from 116 on Sunday and a third of the record 314 on Saturday, that prompted Monday’s emergency meeting.
With 1,732 cases reported so far in November, the month is fast catching up with the total 2,611 coronavirus cases in October, the worst month on record since the pandemic in March.
In total Cyprus has reported 6,098 coronavirus cases.