SPKC: Weekly Covid-19 case count rose by 50% in Latvia

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Last week, nearly 16 thousand new cases of Covid-19 were reported in Latvia, almost 50% more than a week earlier. However, the number of hospitalizations is not rising as rapidly, Jurijs Perevoščikovs, epidemiologist at the Disease Prevention and Control Center (SPKC) told Latvian Radio January 17.

The rapid and extensive spread is associated with the contagious variant of Covid-19 Omicron. Perevoščikovs said that the proportion of positive test samples increased significantly last week, namely 16% of all samples, or 16 out of 100 people tested, were infected. Such a high proportion of positive tests has not been observed in Latvia.

Also last week, there has been a high coefficient of virus reproduction — 1.36 — indicating that 100 people infect 136 other people.

There is also good news at the same time, the SPKC epidemiologist said, there is no significant increase in the number of patients in hospitals. The number of people arriving at hospitals is high, but last week it increased by four percent and there was also a moderate increase in the number of severely ill patients by seven percent.

In October 2021 before the introduction of the lockdown, the number of hospitalizations at the time increased by 60%, he said. The epidemiologist pointed out that it is essential to follow the situation in the hospitals as it will be a crucial factor in whether Covid-19 restrictive measures should be stepped up to maintain the viability of the health system.


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