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Covid-19 case total rises by more than 800 in Latvia

On Wednesday, March 17, Latvia recorded 818 new cases of Covid-19, according to the Disease Prevention and Control Center (SPKC). 

The total number of cases detected since the start of the pandemic now stands at 95,420.

Of 15,915 tests carried out in the last 24 hours, 5.1% were positive, up on the 3.9% rate the day before and back above the 4% rate which is regarded as the threshold at which the virus is spreading in an uncontrolled manner.

However, the 14-day cumulative infection rate per 100,000 inhabitants dropped slightly from 393.1 on Tuesday to 390.8 Wednesday.

Anything over 200 is classed as a "very high risk" pandemic situation under the government's four-stage "traffic light" system.

Unfortunately 12 more deaths were also confirmed March 17. Three victims were aged 60-69, one was aged 70-79, seven were aged 80-89, and one was aged 90-99 years.

A total of 1,777 people have now died in Latvia as a result of the coronavirus since the start of the pandemic according to official statistics.

March 16 saw just 62 people getting a first Covid-19 vaccination in Latvia and 122 getting a second dose. So far 82,843 people have received a first shot and 18,299 a second dose. The suspension of the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine seems to have put paid to hopes of vaccinating at least 3,000 people per day this week.

Meanwhile on March 17 Lithuania recorded 570 new cases of coronavirus and Estonia recorded 1,784 new cases, the second-highest daily total yet recorded.

Neither Lithuania nor Estonia have suspended use of the AstraZeneca vaccine and the vaccination rollouts are considerably more advanced than Latvia's.

Covid-19 information

You can find all the latest Covid-19 statistics, including breakdowns by geographic location and age, at this official website

A summary in English of the latest Covid-19 situation including restrictions in place and rules on public assembly is available at this special government website

Use of nose and mouth coverings is compulsory in all public places indoors, including workplaces, and there are restrictions on what goods can be bought from stores. Physical distancing and frequent hand washing and sanitary cleaning habits are encouraged.

The current state of emergency runs until April 6.

The dedicated hotline for Covid-19 related inquiries (24 hours, 7 days a week) is 8345​. The number for medical emergencies is 113.

There is a Latvian language hotline 8989 which allows people to both register for vaccination and receive answers to questions about the process of vaccination. There is also a website to register for vaccination, https://manavakcina.lv/ which is currently available only in Latvian and Russian.

An English-language version has been promised but has yet to materialise despite assurances in mid-February that it would take around two weeks to prepare. 

All arrivals to the country (including returnees) need to fill in an electronic declaration prior to coming to Latvia. It is available at the website covidpass.lv. Until April 6, entry to Latvia is only allowed for the reasons listed in our other story

Since January 15 arrivals have needed to show a negative Covid-19 test from a maximum 72 hours before arrival.

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