COVID19: Two deaths as cases continue to drop

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Cyprus reported two coronavirus deaths on Sunday as new daily infections continued to drop, to 1,387, with the rate of hospitalisations down to 148, while serious cases were up at 36.

The Health Ministry said in its Covid bulletin that the latest victims were a 91 year old man and a 74 year old woman, raising the February death toll to 89 and 854 since March 2020.

February became the second worst month on record on Friday as it overtook the previous record of 80 last August, while January remains the deadliest month with 100.

Intubated patients were up by one at 13, while 61% of hospitalised COVID-19 patients were unvaccinated.

The number of patients admitted in the Covid wards dropped from 152 to 148.

Some 24 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 320,160.

A total of 93,207 PCR and rapid tests were conducted during the past 24 hours, 5,500 fewer than the previous day, due to the absence of testing in schools.

The decrease in tests and a further drop in new cases from 1,606 to 1,387 improved the benchmark ‘positivity rate’ that decreased from 1.62% to 1.49%, below the 2% level, but still above the safe marker of 1%.

Having peaked at 5,457 on January 4, driven by a spike in the Omicron variant, new cases have kept below 2,000 for the last four days.

Of the new infections, 66 were identified through contact tracing linked to earlier infections. None were discovered from 102 tests in care homes for the second day in a row, nor from 1,928 tests in restricted institutions.