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COVID19: Cyprus ranked second in EU for testing

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Cyprus ranks second behind Denmark in the EU for coronavirus testing per population after ramping up its free test programme over the last two weeks, the Health Ministry said Friday.

Cyprus continues to be among the top EU countries for conducting coronavirus tests, coming second in a recent report prepared by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control.

According to the Health Ministry, the ECDC said that Cyprus ranks second in terms of COVID-19 tests carried out in the last two weeks of January.

Specifically, Cyprus carried out 11,775 PCR and rapid antigen test per 100,000 inhabitants for the 14 days preceding 31 January 2021.

Denmark topped the list with 13,409 tests per 100,000 population, ECDC said.

The Health Ministry said the increased number of tests being performed is a central pillar of the pandemic management strategy for continuous epidemiological surveillance in the community.

“Within the framework of the strategy for the gradual lifting of restrictive measures, the Ministry will be increasing tests, to check employees as they gradually return to their workplaces,” said the Ministry in its announcement.

It aims to test employees weekly to detect cases promptly to prevent the spread of the virus in workplaces.

The Health Ministry said since the beginning of the pandemic more than 1.5 million tests have been carried out in Cyprus.

“This allowed the timely detection of 31,379 cases and the immediate activation of the tracing process, by limiting and investigating the contacts of positive cases.”

According to the World Health Organization and the ECDC, increased testing, combined with social distancing measures, helps to monitor the country’s epidemiological situation and, therefore, facilitate lifting restrictions and restarting society and the economy.