Health experts are making no secret that they are increasingly concerned by the future course of the coronavirus pandemic in the aftermath of the holiday season, particularly in the densely populated area of Attica, which has seen an increase in the number of cases by at least 20% since Christmas.
“There is already an upward trend in Attica, taking into account wastewater analyses, which is a very good indicator,” infectious diseases expert Athanasios Skoutelis said in comments to Kathimerini.
“The problem is that Athens constitutes half the country’s population and what happens in Attica has an impact on the whole country,” he added, noting disconcertingly that winter is still ahead.
“Low temperatures lead to confinement indoors and therefore the easier transmission of respiratory viruses. But I don’t know what is worse: the increase in transmissibility indoors in the middle of a lockdown or the increase in transmissibility outdoors, given the crowds over the weekend, due to the good weather,” he said.
Since Christmas the number of daily cases around the country has on average remained stable (approximately 650 cases), while there has been a slow de-escalation in the number of intubated patients and deaths.
However, the current period is seen as critical.
“We are waiting to see the results of the relaxation of the measures during the three holidays: Christmas, New Year and Epiphany. Now is when the ‘bad’ numbers will appear,” he said
Meanwhile on Tuesday, health authorities announced 866 new cases of Covid-19 and 27 deaths due to the virus, while 337 patients remained intubated. Most cases (364) were detected in Attica, of which 106 were in the center of Athens (10.3 cases per 100,000 inhabitants), 49 in West Attica (30.45 per 100,000) and 49 in Piraeus (10.91).