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29 new COVID-19 cases, experts warn the road ahead is long

08/04/2020 12:02

Twenty-nine new coronavirus cases were announced on Tuesday in Cyprus with the total of confirmed cases rising to 495.

Authorities said that 22 of the cases came from tracing contacts of confirmed cases, three were detected from 371 tests held at Paphos during the last two days and four cases are being investigated. Today’s 29 cases were detected from a total of 1,353 tests.

Speaking during a press conference, at the Ministry of Health, Dr. Leontios Kostrikis, member of the Advisory Body on the pandemic, said today’s cases are in line with the government’s estimates that the road ahead is long but it is the right one.

Dr. Kostrikis said the results are not accidental but “are attributed to the strict tracing strategy and the effectiveness of the restrictive movement measures. These days are especially crucial and will determine the result for the way forward”.

“The epidemiological picture we have before us allows us to look at the future with optimism but we note that nothing has been determined and we do not have the luxury to make mistakes. Our advice remains the same. Stay home and take self-protection measures”, he said.

Dr Marios Loizou, Scientific Director at the Nicosia Directorate of the Cyprus State Health Services Organisation, said that at present, 31 people are being treated at Famagusta General Hospital which is the reference hospital for COVID-19 patients. Three patients are in the Special Care Unit, two were discharged. Thirteen people are on life-support at Limassol General Hospital’s ICU and another 11 at the Nicosia ICU. Their condition is stable but critical. Seven confirmed cases are being treated at a ward and are in stable and good condition.

Dr. Loizou said that the reality is that although there is a positive picture of a stabilisation of the number of cases, however no one is immune to the virus and there is no cure yet.

He also warned that in the days to come, “we may possibly see the repercussions of the first non-compliance of measures”. Already, he said, the number of people on ventilators in the hospitals’ ICUs are increasing. Cyprus, he warned, is a small country with limited number of doctors and nursing staff. The situation, he said, is manageable. To continue to be, complacency is strictly forbidden. Being able to adapt as a society to the new way of life for as long as it takes is what will protect us, he added. If we do not win this fight, there cannot be social and economic restart to the country or going back to the old way of living.