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COVID infections increase, active cases top 1000

23 January 2021, MVT 14:07
Tourists arrive at Velana International Airport, clad as per regulations in face masks. PHOTO: MIHAARU
23 January 2021, MVT 14:07

The Health Protection Agency (HPA) on Friday, observed an increase in persons testing positive for COVID19, with active cases in the country reaching 1000.

According to statistics publicised during yesterday’s press briefing, between 1800 hours Thursday and 1800 hours Friday, a total of 65 persons were found to be infected with the virus.

Of the total, 38 persons were located within the Greater Male’ vicinity. The remaining 26 were found from various resorts.

Within the last 24 hours, active cases reached 1042 after having been successfully maintained below the 1000 mark for several months since October 2020, up until the previous week, January 18, 2021.

According to authorities, the increase can be attributed to the clusters identified among resorts, following which more positive cases were recorded than recoveries.

Since tourism picked up last year, the number of positive cases from resorts have also seen a staggered, but definite, increase.

To illustrate, while 26 people at resorts were found positive for COVID19 on Friday, 17 were recorded on Thursday, while on Wednesday the number was 35.

The number of people needing to be admitted to hospital for treatment has also similarly increased. At the beginning of January, there were 40 COVID19 patients admitted to hospitals, however, by Friday, the number was 69.

Across the three previous weeks of January, the number of people hospitalised has on occasion hit 70 within a day.

The latest figures indicate a total of 14,830 virus cases in Maldives, of which 1,049 are active cases, in addition to 13,731 recoveries and 50 deaths.

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.

But 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 98 million people and claimed over 2.1 million lives around the world. However, out of those infected, more than 70 million people have recovered.

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