COVID19: 1 death, new cases at low levels

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Cyprus reported one coronavirus death on Monday, with an increase in new daily infections to 156 and hospitalisations remaining below 100, as health experts said the deadly Delta variant has run its course.

Epidemiologist Dr Michalis Voniatis said earlier in the day that the strain has completed its life cycle in Cyprus, allowing for daily new COVID-19 cases to stabilise.

He said there may be more cases than those officially recorded, as only people who are forced to get tested for a Safe Pass are regularly tested.

The epidemiologist said cases seem to be stabilising at around 100 a day, as authorities have kept the spread of the virus in schools low.

“We’ll have a clearer picture of the spread of the virus in schools next week,” Voniatis said.

The health ministry said in its daily Covid bulletin that a 92 year old woman died on Sunday but was only reported on Monday, with the death toll rising to 548, of whom 36 were recorded in September.

New cases rose to 156 from 94 the day before and 140 on Saturday, while the number of patients currently admitted at state hospitals for treatment dropped by five to 93. Of these, 40 remain in serious condition, one more from the previous day.

Meanwhile, 13 patients remain intubated, while 76.4% of hospital patients are unvaccinated.

Another eight patients are considered post-Covid, having recovered from the virus, but remain intubated and in a serious state.

The total number of all SARS-CoV-2 infections since the pandemic started in March 2020 rose to 119,113.


12,000 high school tests

The number of PCR and antigen rapid tests conducted during the past 24 hours rose to 64,474, around 24,000 more than Sunday. This included 12,383 tests of high school students and teachers, six of whom tested positive.

With a higher number of tests and 156 new infections, 62 more than the day before, the benchmark ‘test positivity’ rate rose marginally to 0.24% from 0.23% and remains well below the high-risk threshold of 1%.

Of the new cases, 13 were identified from contact tracing, linked to earlier infections, nine were passengers arriving at Larnaca and Paphos airports, and 27 were diagnosed from private initiative and hospital tests.

A further 75 cases were identified from private rapid tests at labs and pharmacies, and 32 were positive from the free national testing programme, available only to those vaccinated or recovered from earlier infections.

All of the 907 tests on staff and residents at retirement homes had negative results, as were 170 random rapid tests at airports and 44 tests at hotels.