COVID-19: With 129 new infections, active cases surpass 2,000

Rapid Response Team (RRT) operates in the streets of Male' City to conduct COVID-19 tests on June 6, 2020. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

Health Protection Agency (HPA), on Saturday, announced 129 additional cases of the new coronavirus, increasing confirmed coronavirus cases in Maldives to 4,898.

According to HPA, the 129 new cases are 93 Maldivians, 26 Bangladeshis, nine Indians, and one Nepali.

129 of the cases were identified from the greater Male’ region, while one was identified from the atolls.

Meanwhile, 37 additional coronavirus patients were confirmed to have made full recoveries over the last 24-hours, increasing total recoveries to 2,791.

The new developments mean Maldives now has 2,088 active cases.

There are 1,481 patients in isolation facilities and 144 in hospitals.

87,632 samples, including repeated samples, have been taken by health authorities to conduct coronavirus tests.

With the 129 new infections this Saturday, 949 people have tested positive over the last one-week period.

August 8: 129 cases

August 7: 89 cases

August 6: 86 cases

August 5: 148 cases

August 4: 153 cases

August 3: 129 cases

August 2: 215 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.

2,620 people – making for 53 percent of the 4,898 coronavirus cases in the country, are Maldivians, while the remaining 47 percent are foreign nationals. And 1,802 people – making for 36 percent of total coronavirus cases – are Bangladeshis. The rest of the coronavirus cases include 336 Indians, 50 Nepalese, and 44 Sri Lankans, 11 Italians, eight Indonesians and six 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.