Rapid antigen testing for COVID-19, in primary schools.

COVID19: No deaths as daily cases remain above 200

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Cyprus reported no coronavirus deaths for the third day in a row on Friday, with the number of new cases dropping slightly to 227 and hospitalisations unchanged at 73.

New daily infections remained above 200 throughout most of the week, starting with 280 on Monday, as government advisors were worried with a further rise during the winter months, prompting officials to encourage third booster shots, with stricter testing measures.

The health ministry said in its Covid bulletin that the death toll since the pandemic started remained unchanged at 575. Only one death was recorded this month, with a 64 year old man dying on Tuesday.

However, reports of new infections dropped to 227 from 252, while hospitalisations remained unchanged at 73.

Of the patients admitted in state hospitals for treatment, 27 remain serious, the same as the previous day.

Meanwhile, intubated patients increased by two to eight, and 67% of hospital patients were reported as unvaccinated.

Only one patient is still considered post-Covid, having recovered from the virus, but remains intubated and in a serious state.


125,640 infections to date

The total number of all SARS-CoV-2 infections since March 2020 rose to 125,640.

The number of PCR and antigen rapid tests conducted during the past 24 rose marginally to 56,230, about 1,000 more than the day before, including about 15,700 in schools.

Of the 12,436 tests in high schools, 11 had the virus, of whom nine were in Limassol, while five of the 3,300 tests in primary schools tested positive.

With an increased number of tests and 227 new infections, 25 fewer than the previous day, the benchmark ‘test positivity’ rate dropped to 0.40% from 0.45%, within the high-risk threshold of 1%.

Of the new cases, 59 were identified through contact tracing linked to earlier infections, one was a passenger arriving at Larnaca and Paphos airports, and 39 were diagnosed from private initiative and hospital tests.

A further 80 cases were identified from private rapid tests at labs and pharmacies, and 48 were positive from the free national testing programme, available only to those vaccinated or recovered from earlier infections.

All of the 495 tests in retirement homes were negative, as were ten tests in special schools.

One person tested positive from 264 samples taken in restricted institutions.