Cyprus reported no coronavirus deaths for the third day in a row on Thursday, with new infection cases rising to 153 and hospitalisation rates dropping to 60, as the government opened the online platform for first-time jabs and booster shots.
The health ministry said people could arrange appointments through the portal for their first jab and booster shots from Friday in an effort to improve the island’s epidemiological state.
The ministry said in its daily Covid bulletin that the death toll since the pandemic started remained unchanged at 559, of whom seven died in October.
After a record 40 deaths in August, the number dropped to 40 in September, with ten days of no Covid-related deaths. So far, October has seen seven days of no Covid-related deaths in Cyprus.
New daily cases rose to 153 from 142, while the number of patients currently admitted at state hospitals for treatment dropped from 63 to Tuesday’s 60. Of these, 22 remain in serious condition, three fewer from the previous day.
Meanwhile, nine patients remain intubated, and 65% of hospital patients are unvaccinated.
Another 10 patients are still 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 March 2020 rose to 121,995.
The number of PCR and antigen rapid tests conducted during the past 24 hours dropped to 54,108, about 8,000 more than Wednesday.
14,500 tests in schools
This included 12,327 tests in high schools, of whom four tested positive, as well as 2,164 tests in primary schools, all of whom tested negative.
With a higher number of tests and a rise in new infections to 153, 11 more than the day before, the benchmark ‘test positivity’ rate dropped to 0.28% from Wednesday’s 0.31%, well below the high-risk threshold of 1%.
Of the new cases, 26 were identified through contact tracing linked to earlier infections, six were passengers arriving at Larnaca and Paphos airports, and 26 were diagnosed from private initiative and hospital tests.
A further 71 cases were identified from private rapid tests at labs and pharmacies, and 24 were positive from the free national testing programme, available only to those vaccinated or recovered from earlier infections.
All of the 641 samples taken at retirement homes were negative for Covid-19, as well as 37 tests of visitors at hotels, 703 tests at special schools, 189 tests at restricted institutions and 56 random rapid tests of airport arrivals.