By Elias Hazou and George Psyllides
Up until March 31 the mortality rate associated with Covid-19 in Cyprus was less than one in 100,000 people, while the case fatality rate stood at 3 per cent, according to epidemiological data released by the health ministry on Thursday.
Out of an estimated 900,000 people residing in the government-controlled areas, eight people had died by that date, working out to a mortality rate (deaths divided by population) of 0.9 per 100,000 persons.
The case fatality rate (deaths divided by confirmed infections) was 3.0 per cent, or eight deceased out of 267 Covid-19 cases detected.
A total of 7,397 tests had been performed (844.5 per 100,000 population). Of those tested, 267 – or 3.6 per cent – were found positive.
The median age of cases is 48.5 years. By age groups, cases included 11 children and adolescents aged 0-17 years-old, 4 per cent, 175 adults aged 18-59 years, 66 per cent, and 78 people aged 60 years or older, 30 per cent. The age of three cases had not been recorded at the moment.
In total, 30 per cent, or 81 patients received hospital care, and 29 patients or 36 per cent were discharged.
Overall, 14 cases (17 per cent of all hospitalized patients) were admitted to ICU, of which 9 (11 per cent of all hospitalized patients) were in ICU as of March 31.
The median age of patients admitted to ICU was 68 years.
The number of cases in ICU was 1.0 per 100,000 population. By comparison, Italy reported a rate of 6.8 per 100,000 population.
In total, 28 per cent, or 70 laboratory-confirmed Covid-19 cases had a history of travel or residence abroad during the 14 days prior to symptom onset (imported).
These cases have a direct link to the UK and Greece, mainly.
Locally acquired infections — index cases and close-contacts of confirmed cases – accounted for 72 per cent (or 183) of the cases; 20 per cent, or 37, were related to Paphos general hospital.
Of the 267 laboratory-confirmed COVID-19-cases, clinical information is available for 91 per cent, 242, of which 13 per cent, or 32, reported no symptoms, and 87 per cent, 210, reported at least one symptom.
The most-commonly reported symptom was coughing, in 52 per cent of cases; then fever in 50 per cent of cases; muscle pain, 31 per cent of cases; and sore throat in 28 per cent of cases. Other reported symptoms included shortness of breath, diarrhea, and headache.
The median time between symptoms onset and date of sampling was four days, according to the report.
Among all cases, 53 per cent were male, 141, and 47 per cent female, or 125, while for one case the gender had not been recorded.
Also, 25 per cent of all cases, or 67 people, were health workers of which 6 per cent, or 15, were physicians; 13 per cent, or 35, nurses; 4 per cent or 11 of other occupations; and six, or 2 per cent, auxiliary staff.
The majority, 34, were in Paphos, mostly linked to the town’s general hospital.
By location breakdown, 77 cases, or 29 per cent, had been reported in the district of Nicosia; 75 or 28 per cent, in Larnaca; 61, or 23 per cent, in Paphos; 30, or 11 per cent in Limassol; 16, or 6 per cent in Famagusta; four, or 2 per cent, in the British bases; and one in a traveler from Germany.
Information was not available at the time on three cases.
Fifteen per cent, or 39, of the 267 Covid-19 cases detected in Cyprus by March 31 were reported in Aradippou, Larnaca, making the municipality one of two hotspots, along with Paphos, according to epidemiological data released by the health ministry on Thursday.
The high number of cases in the area prompted health authorities to start a testing programme exclusively for Aradippou residents in a bid to stop the virus from spreading further.
As far as admissions to ICU go, the first took place on March 16, of one person; on March 17, one person; on March 20, one person; March 21, one person; March 22, one person; March 24, three persons; March 25, one person; March 26, two persons; March 27, one person; and March 28, two persons.