May 18, 2022 7:02 pm

“The most complex moment”: Chile breaks its record for daily cases of the entire pandemic

SANTIAGO.- Chile is going through its worst moment of the Covid-19 pandemic. The Minister of Health, Enrique, Paris today announced 35,197 new cases of coronavirus, an absolute record in the country, which means a 219% increase in just two weeks. The health authorities also reported that there were 82 people deceased due to Covid-19.

“We are living perhaps the most complex moment of this pandemic,” said Paris, during the report on the state of the coronavirus in Chile.

The increase in cases in the country during the summer, say the authorities, has to do directly with the appearance of the omicron variant, while the high vaccination rate in the neighboring country has made it possible to keep deaths and the most serious cases under control. “These numbers have increased all over the world. Our message is that symptomatic should be tested”, emphasized the Chilean health minister.

The speed at which the numbers increased arouses the attention of health authorities. This Thursday, national positivity reached 23.03%, an increase of 5% compared to the same day last week, while in Santiago, the capital, positivity reached 22.86%. Today in the country there are more than 118,000 active cases of Covid-19. “We are in a new stage in the pandemic. We are monitoring and taking into account the evidence-based international experience,” said the Chilean health minister.

01-21-2022 Intensive care unit with a COVID-19 patient in Iquique, Chile SOUTH AMERICAN POLITICS CHILE CRISTIAN NURSERY BOORNES

For now, the health authority is putting its efforts into asking its citizens to respect the current health measures, such as use of a mask and physical distance, in addition to urging that all who can, be vaccinated, especially on a day like today, when it is one year in Chile since the start of the mass vaccination campaign.

As part of the Step by Step plan, 14 communes in the country went back to the Transition Phase, which reduces the capacity in private meetings and public events.

One of the reasons why the numbers have not become a more serious problem, Chilean health authorities say, is their effective vaccination campaign; 46.6 million doses were applied and 89.5% of the population that can be inoculated have their complete vaccination schedule. From that same universe, the 73.8% have already received the booster dose, and 2.1% have already been inoculated with a fourth dose.

A woman receives a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine against COVID-19 at a vaccination center in Santiago, on December 23, 2021.
A woman receives a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine against COVID-19 at a vaccination center in Santiago, on December 23, 2021.JAVIER TORRES – AFP

Since the start of the pandemic, Chile exceeds 2.2 million infections and almost 40,000 deaths since the first case of Covid-19 was registered in the country on March 3, 2020.

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