COVID-19: 148 new infections, 13 recoveries

People wear masks as they drive along a road in Male' City on May 12, 2020. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

Health Protection Agency (HPA), on Wednesday, announced 148 additional cases of the new coronavirus, increasing confirmed coronavirus cases in Maldives to 4,594.

According to HPA, the 148 new cases are 117 Maldivians, 22 Bangladeshis, seven Indians, one Nepalese and one Seychellois.

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

Meanwhile, 13 additional coronavirus patients were confirmed to have made full recoveries over the last 24-hours, increasing total recoveries to 2,706.

The new developments mean Maldives now has 1,869 active cases.

There are 1,282 patients in isolation facilities and 110 in hospitals.

84,144 samples, including repeated samples, have been taken by health authorities to conduct coronavirus tests.

With the 148 new infections this Wednesday, 1,672 people have tested positive over the past one-week period.

August 5: 148 cases

August 4: 153 cases

August 3: 129 cases

August 2: 215 cases

August 1: 156 cases

July 31: 74 cases

July 30: 152 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.

2,410 people – making for 52 percent of the 4,594 coronavirus cases in the country, are Maldivians, while the remaining 48 percent are foreign nationals. And 1,732 people – making for 37 percent of total coronavirus cases – are Bangladeshis. The rest of the coronavirus cases include 320 Indians, 49 Nepalese, and 41 Sri Lankans, 11 Italians, eight Indonesians and five Filipinos.

19 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.

Following the surge, authorities have now declared masks mandatory in the greater Male’ region as well as all other residential islands with confirmed coronavirus cases. Authorities have announced a 10:00 pm to 05:00 am curfew in the capital, and a ban on all non-essential travel of persons from the capital to other residential islands.

Authorities have also urged that people in all residential islands, even those with no confirmed cases, wear masks when in public.