Cyprus has been ‘downgraded’ to the ‘dark red’ zone for coronavirus in the latest update issued by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) on Thursday, after registering 493.13 cases per 100,000 inhabitants over the last 14 days.
The data concern week 25 to week 26. The ECDC updates its classification each week.
Cyprus is the only country/territory inside the EU/European Economic Area currently designated as ‘dark red’ – deemed the riskiest from an epidemiological standpoint. It slipped from ‘red’ in the previous ECDC update.
With the uptick in positives detected over the past week, the island’s latest 14-day case notification rate has now climbed to 493.13 per 100 000 inhabitants.
However, according to the ECDC’s own designation system, a country lands in the ‘dark red’ zone if the 14-day cumulative Covid-19 case notification rate is 500 or more.
The ECDC defines the ‘red’ designation as follows: “if the 14-day cumulative Covid-19 case notification rate ranges from 75 to 200 and the test positivity rate of tests for Covid-19 infection is 4 per cent or more, or if the 14-day cumulative Covid-19 case notification rate is more than 200 but less than 500.”
By the ECDC’s own definition, Cyprus should still be classed as red – not dark red.
The apparent discrepancy could not immediately be cleared up.
A day earlier, health authorities had reported a record number of positives for the island – 952 people from 44,045 tests, a positivity rate of 2.16 per cent.
Also on Thursday, the Funke group of newspapers, citing government officials, reported that Germany plans to designate Cyprus as a high incidence area, which means that incoming travellers must quarantine, which can be shortened if they test negative five days after entry.
In addition to the colour-coded maps published on the ECDC’s website, the agency also publishes downloadable datasets. The latest dataset released Thursday likewise designated Cyprus as ‘dark red’.
The datasets also showed that Cyprus had the third highest testing rate in the EU/EEA, at 29,730 per 100,000 population. Denmark comes in second at 36,052, and Austria tests the most, at 54,012.