COVID19: Two years on, pandemic death toll passes 900

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Cyprus reported three coronavirus deaths on Sunday, raising the death toll on the second anniversary of the pandemic to 902, as new daily cases remained below the 3,000 mark and receded to 2,314, with hospitalisations dropping to 107, of whom 17 are critical.

After daily infections dropped below 2,000 two weeks ago and a level of 1,500-1,700 last weekend, new Covid cases shot up to 3,695 on Tuesday, probably due to a combination of fine weather and relaxation of restrictions on Carnival weekend and the Green Monday public holiday.

The Health Ministry said in its Covid bulletin that the latest victims were two men, aged 75 and 93, and an 80 year old woman.

This raised the March death toll rose to 37. January was the deadliest month on record with 101, followed by 91 in February, overtaking the previous record of 80 last August.

Intubated patients decreased to five, while 56% of hospitalised COVID-19 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 353,002.

A total of 68,993 PCR and rapid tests were conducted during the past 24 hours, about 10,000 less than the previous day.

With a drop in the number of tests, as well as in new cases from 2,812 to 2,314, the benchmark ‘positivity rate’ dropped from 3.58% to 3.55%, more than triple the safe marker of 1%.

Having peaked at 5,457 on January 4, driven by a spike in the Omicron variant, new cases remained below 2,500 in recent weeks.

Of the new infections, 69 were identified through contact tracing linked to earlier infections.

No new infections were discovered from 35 tests in care homes, while five tested positive from 173 tests in restricted institutions.