Findings from 3,000 diagnostic coronavirus tests completed on Tuesday show the virus is spreading, health minister Constantinos Ioannou said on Wednesday, while he called on people to continue to cooperate and be vigilant.
“This development is of particular concern to us because if outbreaks are left unchecked, then the spread of the virus can reach dangerous proportions,” he said.
“The data also shows that most carriers of the virus are young and have no symptoms. This raises our concerns because it increases the risk of transmitting the virus, due to the fact that people with this profile are more socially active and spread the virus, unknowingly, to more people and over a larger geographical area, which makes tracing difficult.”
In view of the results, the ministry will start to carry out another 10,000 diagnostic tests in all districts starting on Wednesday. These are expected to help identify asymptomatic carriers as well as giving a better overall picture of the situation.
“I would like to once again appeal to all citizens to faithfully follow the instructions set out in the health protocols. The first line of defence should be social distancing, limiting our socialising as much as possible, especially in places where a large number of people gather. It is also important to observe the personal protection measures, the use of face masks where needed and the frequent and thorough washing of hands.”
The minister went on to say the situation is under control and the epidemiological picture remains at satisfactory levels.
“However, recent outbreaks are indicative of a relapse of the virus, which should be stopped in time,” he warned.
So far, he added, Cyprus has been one of the few countries in the world which faced the pandemic in an exemplary way.
“We have won the battle but the war is raging and until the vaccine is found we must be vigilant.”
“I ask again for the cooperation and understanding of the citizens. I rely on the responsibility of each individual and I rely on the conscientiousness of the vast majority of our society. I understand fatigue, I listen to the discomfort and I understand the problems that occur in everyone’s daily life. Our primary concern is public health. This effort is a marathon and I am sure that our people have the necessary reserves of patience and perseverance to reach the end.”