COVID19: Two deaths, patient numbers on the rise

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Cyprus reported two coronavirus deaths on Sunday, with new daily cases dropping to 2,853, while hospitalisations remained above the 200-level and increased to 203, just as the government is planning to remove more restrictions.

Health Minister Michalis Hadjipantela said earlier on Sunday that the cabinet will decide later in the week on easing COVID-19 measures after consulting the Health Advisory Committee, such as abolishing the use of masks outdoors and decreasing the number of tests.

However, Hadjipantela said the authorities are monitoring current developments, including the benchmark of hospital admissions before easing any more measures.

The health ministry said in its Covid bulletin that two women died during the past 24 hours, aged 76 and 87, raising the April death toll to seven.

To date, 942 people have died of Covid-19, more than a quarter of whom in the first quarter of this year.

March ended with 65 coronavirus deaths, while January was the deadliest month on record with 101, followed by 91 in February, overtaking the previous record of 81 last August.

Hospitalisations up by 2

The total number of patients admitted in Covid wards in state hospitals increased by two to 203, inching above the first safety barrier based on the number of available hospital beds, while critical cases were down by six at 27.

Intubated patients decreased to eight, while 56% of hospitalised COVID-19 patients were unvaccinated.

A further 14 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 rose to 439,802.

A total 78,818 PCR and antigen rapid tests were conducted during the past 24 hours, about 1,000 less than the day before.

With a marginal decrease in the number of tests, and a bigger drop in new cases from 3,894 to 2,853, the benchmark ‘positivity rate’ dropped from 4.89% to 3.62%, down from the record 7.27% ten days ago, and just under four times above the safe marker of 1%.

Of the new infections, 82 were identified through contact tracing linked to earlier infections.

There were 68 new infections in care homes and five in restricted institutions.