Cyprus reported no coronavirus deaths on Thursday, the fourth time this month, as new cases rose again to 5,186, the third highest daily count ever, keeping the infection rate at a near record 5.02%.
The health ministry said in its Covid bulletin that hospitalisations marginally dropped to 151, with the number of critical patients inching up to 24.
The March death toll remained unchanged at 52, with the total number of Covid-19 victims since the pandemic started at 922.
January was the deadliest month on record with 101, followed by 91 in February, overtaking the previous record of 81 last August.
The number of patients being treated in state hospitals dropped by two from 153 to 151, with one more critical case, rising to 24.
Intubated patients remained unchanged at seven, while 52% of hospitalised COVID-19 patients were unvaccinated.
Some 20 patients are still considered post-Covid, having recovered from the virus, but remain intubated and in a serious state.
Total infections near 400,000
The total number of SARS-CoV-2 infections since March 2020 rose to 397,205.
A total of 103,263 PCR and antigen rapid tests were conducted during the past 24 hours, about 20,000 more than the previous day, with 35,000 tests in schools, including elementaries where tests are conducted every other day.
Of the 10,949 tests in high schools, 90 were positive, with 178 new cases from 18,168 tests in primary schools. A further 95 new infections identified from the “test to stay” programme for students and teachers, which now also includes kindergartens.
With an increase in the number of tests, as well as in cases from 4,704 to 5,186, the benchmark ‘positivity rate’ dropped slightly to 5.02% from Wednesday’s record 5.64%, five times above the safe marker of 1%.
Of the new infections, 186 were identified through contact tracing linked to earlier infections.
There were 22 new infections in care homes from 1,427 tests, while three of 533 tests in restricted institutions were positive.