COVID-19: 129 new infections, 27 recoveries

Rapid Response Team (RRT) operates in the streets of Male' City to conduct COVID-19 tests on May 28, 2020. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

Health Protection Agency (HPA), on Monday, announced 129 additional cases of the new coronavirus, increasing confirmed coronavirus cases in Maldives to 4,293.

According to HPA, the 129 new cases are 93 Maldivians, 23 Bangladeshis, eight Indians, four Sri Lankans, and one Indonesian.

127 of the cases were identified from the greater Male’ region, while the remaining two were identified from the atolls.

Meanwhile, 27 additional coronavirus patients were confirmed to have made full recoveries over the last 24-hours, increasing total recoveries to 2,670.

The new developments mean Maldives now has 1,490 active cases.

There are 1,013 patients in isolation facilities and 92 in hospitals.

82,208 samples, including repeated samples, have been taken by health authorities to conduct coronavirus tests.

There are 13 islands outside of the capital with active cases. They are:

  • H. A. Kelaa
  • H. A. Ihavanandhoo
  • N. Medhufaru (Soneva Jani)
  • R. Inguraidhoo
  • B. Eydhafushi
  • B. Thulhaadhoo
  • B. Hithaadhoo
  • B. Kamadhoo
  • B. Kanufushi (Seaside Finolhu Maldives)
  • Lh. Kurendhoo
  • Lh. Hinnavaru
  • K. Maafushi
  • V. Fulidhoo

With the 129 new infections this Monday, 924 people have tested positive over the past one-week period.

August 3: 129 cases

August 2: 215 cases

August 1: 156 cases

July 31: 74 cases

July 30: 152 cases

July 29: 61 cases

July 28: 137 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.

2,178 people – making for 50 percent of the 4,293 coronavirus cases in the country, are Maldivians, while the remaining 51 percent are foreign nationals. And 1,687 people – making for 39 percent of total coronavirus cases – are Bangladeshis. The rest of the coronavirus cases include 302 Indians, 48 Nepalese, and 41 Sri Lankans, 11 Italians, seven Indonesians and five Filipinos.

18 coronavirus patients have died from complications.

Greater public movement following the relaxation of many of the coronavirus restriction in 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.

Wearing masks in public, which had previously been a recommendation, has now been declared mandatory for the greater Male' region.

The surge in cases has given rise to calls to re-impose the lockdown, but President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih said in a tweet earlier this Monday that a second lockdown wasn’t the best approach, and urged the public to wear masks when in public and follow the instructions of health authorities.

“The cooperation of everyone is of paramount importance. An additional lockdown isn’t the best [approach],” he said.