COVID-19: 152 new infections, 14 recoveries

Rapid Response Teams (RRT) operates in the streets of Male' City to conduct COVID-19 tests on June 8, 2020. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

Health Protection Agency (HPA), on Thursday, announced 152 additional cases of the new coronavirus, increasing confirmed coronavirus cases in Maldives to 3,719.

According to HEOC, the 152 new cases are 89 Maldivians, 54 Bangladeshis, five Indians and four Sri Lankans.

142 of the cases were identified from the greater Male’ region, while the remaining 10 were identified from the atolls.

It marks the biggest single-day spike of coronavirus cases to be recorded in Maldives.

Meanwhile, 14 additional coronavirus patients were confirmed to have made full recoveries over the last 24-hours, increasing total recoveries to 2,568 cases.

The new developments mean Maldives now has 1,120 active cases.

There are 657 patients in isolation facilities and 59 in hospitals.

78,040 samples, including repeated samples, have been taken by health authorities to conduct coronavirus tests.

With the 152 new infections this Thursday, 599 people have tested positive over the past one-week period.

July 30: 152 cases

July 29: 61 cases

July 28: 137 cases

July 27: 67 cases

July 26: 50 cases

July 25: 77 cases

July 24: 55 cases

Maldives identified its first coronavirus case on March 7, and declared a state of public health emergency over the pandemic less than a week later on March 12.

While coronavirus cases had initially been restricted to resorts and safaris, and later quarantine facilities holding inbound travelers, Male’ City identified its first coronavirus case on April 15, prompting a city-wide lockdown and a nationwide ban on nonessential travel.

The populous capital quickly emerged as the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak in Maldives, contributing to over 90 percent of total cases.

1,756 people – making for 47 percent of the 3,719 coronavirus cases in the country, are Maldivians, while the remaining 53 percent are foreign nationals. And 1,572 people – making for 42 percent of total coronavirus cases – are Bangladeshis. The rest of the coronavirus cases include 280 Indians, 46 Nepalese, and 33 Sri Lankans, 11 Italians and five Filipinos.

16 coronavirus patients have died from complications. The latest fatality was recorded earlier this Thursday.

Greater public movement following the relaxation of many of the coronavirus restriction this July has led to a surge in coronavirus cases. An increasing number of new coronavirus cases are unlinked to existing clusters, which health authorities warn indicates a wide community spread.

HPA initiated a mass inspection of cafés and restaurants, shops, gyms and fitness centers, salons and markets in the greater Male’ region last Wednesday, a follow-up to a mass inspection conducted earlier this July. 27 business establishments, which include 17 cafes and restaurants, nine shops and one hair salon, have been closed for violation of the safety guidelines issued by the agency in response to the coronavirus outbreak.

Meanwhile, wearing masks in public, which had previously been a recommendation, has now been declared mandatory.