COVID19: New cases spike to nearly 500

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Cyprus reported no coronavirus deaths on Friday, while the number of new cases spiked to 475, a figure not seen since August, with hospitalisations remaining at the same level all week.

The health ministry said that with no Covid-19 deaths reported for the fourteenth day this month, the toll since the pandemic started remained at 589, of which four were in November.

New infections have more than doubled, starting from 206 last Sunday and rising steadily on a daily basis. Friday saw 87 more than the previous day.

Hospitalisations dropped by one to 85, of whom 36 are serious, two more than Thursday.

At 15, intubated patients remained the same, as 64% of all hospital patients were reported as unvaccinated.

Three 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 129,633.

The number of PCR and antigen rapid tests conducted during the past 24 hours totalled 61,720, almost the same as the previous day, with 16,100 tests in schools.


Increase in high schools

Only one tested positive from 3,544 samples in primary schools, with 21 new cases among 12,677 tests in high schools.

Despite the same number of tests, the significant rise in new cases pushed the benchmark ‘test positivity’ rate to 0.77% from 0.63%, closer to the high-risk threshold of 1%.

Of the new cases, 110 were identified through contact tracing linked to earlier infections, two were passengers arriving at Larnaca and Paphos airports, and 58 were diagnosed from private initiative and hospital tests.

A further 197 cases were identified from private rapid tests at labs and pharmacies, and 100 were positive from the free national testing programme, available only to those vaccinated or recovered from earlier infections.

All of the 532 tests at retirement homes were negative, as well as 90 random rapid tests at airports, and 278 in restricted institutions.