COVID19: Virus coming under control, risks remain

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Despite Cyprus succeeding in bringing a resurgence of COVID-19 under control, there is still transmission in the community while the health system is under pressure.

The spread of coronavirus in Cyprus seems to have been contained, said the Health Ministry on Friday, with the weekly positive test rate below 1%, but the notification rate is still above safety levels.

According to the Ministry’s latest report, Cyprus’ notification rate for the past two weeks is now at 183 per 100,000 inhabitants, down from 243.8.

The rate is above the safety limit of 150 per 100,000 set by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).

The burden on the health System continues, including Intensive Care Units, despite the slight decrease in the number of patients, said the ministry.

“With the reopening of more sectors of the economy on February 8, citizens must follow health protocols and emphasis will be given on more tests to prevent new outbreaks and hospitalisations.”

According to the report, updated to 2 February, a total of 30,933 COVID-19 cases have been diagnosed, of which 204 died due from COVID-19 (case fatality risk: 0.7%).

The COVID-19 associated mortality is 23 per 100,000 population.

In the fortnight covered in the report (20 January – 02 February), 1,625 cases were diagnosed with a median age of 39 — 51.1% were female and 48.9% male.

The vast majority of cases were locally acquired as just 1.2% of the cases were imported.

On 2 February, 125 people were still hospitalized, with a median age of 70, 56.8% were men, and 37.6% were from Limassol.

Of 28 cases in intensive care units (ICU), 24 were intubated. The median age of current ICU patients is 71  and 53.6% are males. Fifteen (53.6%) patients currently in ICU have pre-existing conditions.

Among 1,625 cases diagnosed between 20 January and 2 February, 51.1% were female and 48.9% male.

By age group, cases included 281 infants, children and adolescents aged 0-19 years-old (17.3%), 1,043 adults aged 20-59 (64.2%), 396 persons aged 60 and older (18.5%).

From all cases diagnosed over 14 days, 732 (45.1%) were in Limassol, 459 (28.3%) in Nicosia, 244 (15%) in Larnaca, 85 (5.2%) in Famagusta, 72 (4.4%) in Paphos, and 33 (2%) were reported either in the British bases or had a residence abroad, or information was not available.

Deaths occurred in 137 men (67.2%) and 67 (32.8%) women; the median age of all COVID-19 associated deaths was 81 (34.3%) from Nicosia, (29.2%) from Limassol, (19.1%) from Larnaca, (7.8%) from Paphos,  (6.9%) from Famagusta and four deaths (2%) occurred either in the British bases or had a residence abroad, or information was not available.