COVID19: One death, fewer patients, testing on the up

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Cyprus reported one coronavirus death on Thursday, a drop in hospitalisations and 213 new infections, as well as an increase in the daily tests, driven by the regulations for public meetings, as well as concerns of a major virus spread among football fans.

Nicosia club Omonia won the championship on Monday, hours after Lockdown III restrictions were lifted, and some 20,000 football fans overcrowded the club’s grounds, breaking all health protocols.

Health officials said that any spread of the infection would appear within seven to ten days.

The health ministry said that a 63 year old man died of COVID-19, raising the death toll for May to 30 and the total since the pandemic started to 342.

The number of patients being treated for COVID-19 dropped to 167, from 173 the day before, and the critical cases to 54 from 56 the day before.

A higher than normal total of 74,926 PCR and antigen rapid tests were conducted on Thursday, which, based on the 213 new cases, down from 260 the day before, generated a ‘test positivity’ rate of 0.28%, the lowest in recent days and far below the safety benchmark of 1.00%.

In all, Cyprus has had 70,571 new cases of SARS-CoV-2 in the past 14 months.

Of the day’s new infections, 43 were established through contact tracing linked to earlier infections, 63 were diagnosed through private lab and hospital testing, and 107 were positive from the national rapid testing porgramme.

Of these, 37 were in Nicosia (test positivity rate of 0.16%, 30 I Limassol (0.14%), nine in Paphos (0.15%) and six in Famagusta district (0.17%).

Some 572 tests on staff and residents at retirement homes all returned negative, while two students among 9,927 samples from high school gymnasiums tested positive.