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COVID-19: Maldives records 51 new cases, 35 recoveries

Shahudha Mohamed
17 January 2021, MVT 22:49
People shopping at the local market in Male’ City after the government lifted lockdown restrictions on the capital region. PHOTO: MIHAARU
Shahudha Mohamed
17 January 2021, MVT 22:49

The Health Protection Agency (HPA), on Sunday, announced that 51 more people tested positive for COVID-19 in Maldives, while 35 recovered from the disease.

According to the agency, 19 of the new cases were detected from the Greater Male' Region, while three cases were identified in inhabited islands, 28 in operational resorts and one on a liveaboard.

Maldives now records a total of 14,513 virus cases of which 917 are active cases, in addition to 13,540 recoveries and 49 deaths.

Last August, authorities tightened the safety measures implemented in the Greater Male' region, following an alarming upsurge of COVID-19 cases after the state initiated efforts to steer the country towards a 'new normal' with the phased easing of lockdown restrictions. After a long period of recording over 100 daily cases, the numbers fell to two-digits during the most part of September 2020.

Throughout the rest of the year, numbers had slipped further down below 50, with a few spikes on rare occasions, but cases have been on the rise throughout January 2021.

HPA recently eased several safety measures imposed to control the spread of COVID-19. These leniencies include the cancellation of the city-wide curfew over the greater Male’ region, the reduction of quarantine periods to 10 days as well as cancelling mandatory quarantine for locals returning to Maldives and for locals travelling to resorts.

However, the agency has renewed calls for citizens to adhere to protective measures to contain the spread of the virus, cautioning against a public sentiment that the outbreak has been “controlled”.

On March 12, 2020, WHO classified the spread of COVID-19 as a global pandemic. To date, the new strain of novel coronavirus has infected over 95.1 million people and claimed over 2 million lives around the world. However, out of those infected, more than 67.9 million people have recovered.

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