COVID19: Four deaths, new cases drop below 1,000

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Cyprus reported four COVID-19 deaths on Friday, the same as last week, with a significant drop in new infections below the 1,000 mark and a stable number of hospitalisations.

The health ministry said in its weekly Covid bulletin that the latest victims were four women aged 66 to 88, raising the death toll since the pandemic started three years ago in March 2020 to 1,349.

The number of new cases dropped below 1,000 to 950, down from 1,047 last week, and 1,281 and 1,701 the weeks before.

The average daily rate of infections remained below 200 for the third consecutive week and dropped to 135 from 150 the week before.

Coronavirus infections since the pandemic started rose to 655,664.

One critical

The number of hospitalisations was stable, down by three from last week to 39. Of these, only one was in a critical state and remained intubated.

Testing was lower than last week’s level, reaching 54,704 PCR and rapid antigen tests, about 3,100 fewer than before.

These two factors prompted the benchmark ‘positivity rate’ to drop further 1.74% and remain below the 2% level for the second week in a row, down from 1.81% last week. The infection rate remains just below two times higher than the safe rate of 1%.

Masks remain mandatory in hospitals, testing labs and pharmacies.

Free government testing sites are only available at state hospitals for visitors.