COVID19: Six deaths, cases fall

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Cyprus reported six coronavirus deaths on Saturday, rising to 29 for the week and 71 for January, as new daily cases dipped 9.5% to under 2,000 and hospitalisations were stable.

The Health Ministry said in its Covid bulletin that the latest victims were five men and one woman, aged between 66-90.

This brought the death toll since the pandemic to 709.

January deaths are the second-highest tally behind the record 80 in August 2021.

Since March 2020, 447 men have died of Covid-19 (63%) and 262 women, with an average age of 76 years.

An unprecedented surge of COVID-19 cases, which reached 5,450 earlier this month powered by the Omicron variant, is beginning to wane.

Hospitalisations dropped from 242 to 240, as serious cases fell to 79, five fewer than the day before.

Intubated patients dropped by six to 27, while 73.43% of hospital patients were unvaccinated.

Some 21 patients are still considered post-Covid, having recovered from the virus, but remain intubated and in a serious state.

The total number of SARS-CoV-2 infections since March 2020 has risen to 234,145.

A total of 82,187 PCR and rapid tests were conducted during the past 24 hours, some 14,000 less than the day before.

The drop in the number of tests and drop in new cases from 2,192 to 1,984 saw the benchmark ‘positivity’ rate rise to 2.41% from 2.06% the previous day, having skyrocketed to 5.98% on New Year’s day, six times above the high-risk barrier of 1%.

Of the new infections, seven were identified through contact tracing linked to earlier infections, 32 were passengers who arrived at Larnaca and Paphos airports, and 359 were diagnosed from private initiative, hospital and GP tests.

A further 926 cases were detected from private rapid tests at labs and pharmacies, and 660 were positive from the free national testing programme, available only to those vaccinated or recovered from earlier infections.