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Coronavirus: Virologist says there will be no second wave

Senior government scientific advisor Dr Leondios Kostrikis

There will be no second wave of Covid-19, leading member of the ministry epidemiology team Leontios Kostrikis said on Friday, citing international research.

“As time passes, most scientific assessments suggest what I was supporting about a month ago, that there will be no second wave,” he told Sigmalive.

Literature considers three possible scenarios, the good, the bad and the ugly, as they are called. The good scenario is what we are experiencing currently in Cyprus, the virologist said, where the epidemic is near the end and there will be some small infections.

The bad means the virus will not go away suddenly but will expand and significantly resurge over time and will last until the end of the year or maybe more.

The ugly scenario includes a new wave of the virus, which will come from abroad and will start a new epidemic like the one in March.

“We will have the good scenario,” he said.

Kostrikis compared Covid-19 with other epidemics like SARS-CoV in Toronto back in 2001 and MERS-CoV in the Middle East ten years ago. He said those epidemics started, finished, and then disappeared.

Covid-19 appears to be like those viruses, Kostrikis said.

“It doesn’t seem to be like influenza which comes in waves from the East,” he said.

He reiterated that he believes the virus has ran its course and Cyprus will only experience smaller infections until the end of the year. Kostrikis was hopeful that by that time we will also have a vaccine.

Commenting on the student who was one of the two positive coronavirus cases announced on Thursday, he said he was found via contact tracing and further tests will take place from the student’s contacts.

“It is not as worrying as it appears to be an isolated case.” Through the tracing of the students’ contacts, we will be able to track how well the restrictive measures are implemented in schools, Kostrikis said.

The epidemiological index in Cyprus remained stable even after the reopening of businesses such as cafés and restaurants, he added.

“This is surprising even to me that I am naturally positive,” he said.

In the third phase of relaxation of measure, June 9, kindergartens are expected to reopen. Testing will be carried out on kindergarten teachers and the children’s parents, Kostrikis said.

“We have an excellent epidemiological picture, and this allows us to look to the future with optimism.”

Swimming pools might also open before the third phase, he said.

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