COVID19: Death toll breaks past 1,000 -fewer cases

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Cyprus reported 18 new coronavirus deaths this week, with the number of victims since the pandemic started breaking past the 1,000 mark to 1,006, while daily infections and hospitalisations dropped significantly.

The health ministry said in its weekly Covid bulletin on Friday that the youngest was a 62 year old woman and the oldest a 102 year old man, raising the April death toll to 52.

Some 310, or nearly a third of all deaths occurred in the first four months of this year.

March ended with 65 coronavirus deaths, while January was the deadliest month on record with 101, followed by 92 in February, overtaking the previous record of 83 last August.

Hospitalisations dropped significantly within a week from 157 last Thursday to 108, critical cases decreased from 31 to 25, while intubated patients were up one at eight.

The rate of unvaccinated patients being treated in state hospitals for Covid-19 dropped from 49% last week to 44%.

Average 874 cases daily

In a week, 6,115 new infections were reported, on average 874 daily, down from 1,421 cases last Thursday.

A further nine patients are still considered post-Covid, one less than the week before, having recovered from the virus, but remain intubated and in a serious state.

Total SARS-CoV-2 infections since March 2020 rose to 470,319.

A total of 269,310 PCR and antigen rapid tests were conducted during the past week, averaging some 38,500 daily, nearly half the 67,206 tested last Thursday, with 26,500 tests in schools due to a shorter week before the Greek Orthodox Easter break.

Of the 6,779 tests in secondary schools, 13 were positive, with 53 new cases from 18,220 tests in primary schools. A further 15 new infections were identified from the “test to stay” programme for students and teachers, which also includes kindergartens, and one new case in special schools.

With a significant drop in tests, as well as new cases, the benchmark ‘positivity rate’ rose slightly from 2.11% to 2.27%, down from the record 7.27% in late March and double the safe limit of 1%.

Of the new infections, 58 were identified through contact tracing linked to earlier infections.

A further 81 tested positive in care homes, while 12 tested positive in restricted institutions.