NEWS

Cases continue to fluctuate at high levels

cases-continue-to-fluctuate-at-high-levels

With hospitals at breaking point, there were no substantial signs yesterday that the pandemic was relenting as the number of new cases and intubations continued to fluctuate at high levels.

More specifically, the National Public Health Organization (EODY) yesterday announced 3,062 new cases and 67 deaths due to the disease.

The total number of infections since the start of the pandemic climbed to 245,405 while the death tally rose to 7,649.

The geographical distribution of cases remained stable, with Attica continuing to have the lion’s share of infections. Almost 50% of cases were identified in Attica, which had 1,422 confirmed cases, with Piraeus and Western Attica particularly burdened.

Thessaloniki had 387 cases, ahead of Achaia with 121 and Larissa with 115.

The transmissibility index of the virus (Rt) throughout Greece is estimated at marginally above 1 (1.02), while the positivity rate last week was 5.96% out of a total of 265,759 tests.

The number of intubated patients was 699, while there were 476 hospital admissions (the average for the last seven days was 492). 

Last week saw a record in the number of Covid-19 hospitalizations (3,303). At the peak of the previous wave in mid-November there were 3,190 new admissions in one week.

The day before yesterday, Attica hospitals saw 159 new admissions of patients with Covid-19, versus 240 the previous day.

However, despite the reduced number of admissions compared to the previous days, hospitals remained on the brink yesterday, with doctors on duty describing the situation as dramatic, requiring untenable workloads. 

What’s more, the number of intubated patients being treated outside of intensive care units remained high yesterday, at more than 60.

Of grave concern were reports by the Union of Public Hospital Workers (POEDIN) that deaths of intubated patients outside ICUs have already been recorded in several hospitals.

Meanwhile, two new large vaccination centers will go into operation in Peristeri, western Athens, and Elliniko on the capital’s southern coast as of April 1. 

The Health Ministry confirmed on Tuesday that the number of people to receive at least one dose of the vaccines had exceeded 1 million. It noted that given there is a higher number of doses expected in April, there will also be more vaccination centers. The stated objective is to inoculate the majority of people over 60 and those with underlying conditions in May. So far, health workers, people aged 75 and over and 60- to 64-year-olds have been inoculated, while appointments have begun for those with underlying diseases.

Appointments for people aged 70 to 74 will begin tomorrow and for people aged 65 to 69 in early April.