COVID19: Death rate leaps to 7 as cases fewer

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Cyprus saw the coronavirus death rate leap to seven on Wednesday, with new cases continuing to drop to 2,549, while hospitalisations decreased to 175, of whom 43 were critical.

The Health Ministry said in its Covid bulletin that the latest victims were four women and three men aged 59 to 99, with the youngest a 50 year old male, raising the February death toll to 52 and 798 since March 2020.

January was the deadliest month with 100, overtaking the previous record of 80 deaths last August.

Intubated patients remained unchanged at 13, while 71% of hospitalised COVID-19 patients were unvaccinated.

Some 30 patients are still considered post-Covid, one less from Tuesday, 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 298,235.

A total of 97,679 PCR and rapid tests were conducted during the past 24 hours, 7,000 fewer than the day before as testing continued in primary and secondary schools.

Of the 12,923 tests in high schools, 104 were positive, while 76 new cases were discovered among 5,623 samples from the ‘test to stay’ programme. There were no tests in primary schools.

The decrease in the number of tests as well as new cases from 2,646 to 2,549, saw the benchmark ‘positivity rate’ rise from 2.53% to 2.61%, more than double the safe marker of 1%.

Having peaked at 5,457 on January 4, driven by a spike in the Omicron variant, new cases dipped below 3,000 for most of last week, remaining above that level for most of the past month.

Of the new infections, 155 were identified through contact tracing linked to earlier infections.

Of the 1,155 rapid tests conducted in retirement homes, 17 tested positive, and two new cases were found from 1,730 tests in restricted institutions.