Malta’s Covid-19 reproduction number has remained at 1.50, however the past week was the highest in terms of Covid-19 related fatalities, statistician Vincent Marmara told The Malta Independent on Sunday in his exclusive weekly video blog on the Covid-19 situation in Malta.
The reproduction factor of the virus is one of the key figures which countries across the world have been trying to reduce ever since the Covid-19 pandemic began. The aim for countries has been to reduce the ratio to a level of 1 – which would mean that one person would transmit the virus to one other person.
The reproduction number is based on a variety of factors, such as the source of new cases – for instance, whether they are imported or whether they are part of particular clusters – and the amount of testing being carried out.
Marmara explained with the data pertaining to this week, which has remained largely similar to last week, the r-factor has remained at 1.50.
The number of cases found in the past week is 903 – a slight decrease over the 951 cases found last week, but statistically very similar.
Marmara’s figures show in fact that the number of positive cases when compared to the number of tests stands at 4.2% – identical to the figure reported last week, which is almost a whole percentage point lower than the record-high of 5.1% reported four weeks ago.
However, unfortunately the past week saw the highest number of deaths related to Covid-19 be reported since the pandemic began, with 19 deaths. This is 7 higher than the 12 deaths reported in each of the last two weeks.
Presenting new data meanwhile, Marmara noted that the last two weeks have seen the highest number of recoveries from the virus so far. He observed that this is to be expected as the more people contract the virus, the higher – numerically – the number of people who recover will be.
Indeed, 748 people recovered from the virus in the past week – slightly less than the 842 who recovered last week.
An interesting statistic also presented by Marmara however compares the number of people recovering against the number of people testing positive within the same week. Last week, this comparison stood at 83% – which essentially means that there were 17% more people testing positive for the virus than there were recovering from it.
Marmara noted that the aim here is to see this comparison be above 100%, because this would mean that the number of people recovering from the virus is higher than the number of people testing positive for it – leading to a decrease in the number of active cases.
Delving into some details about the situation overseas, Marmara said noted how cases had begun to decrease in France, and momentarily in Spain as well – although there has been a new increase reported there in recent days.
The United Kingdom, Italy, and Germany meanwhile have all continued to experience strong increases in the past week. Cases in the United States meanwhile have not abated either – indeed they have increased to record highs once again.
Concluding, Marmara noted that while one must always consider the risks of what they are doing vis a vis the pandemic, one must also consider the current period, where influenza and a number of colds are also in circulation.
He noted that while in the past it would be commonplace to ignore very minimal symptoms of these viruses and go about with one’s daily life, this mentality must change, as those symptoms may turn out to be Covid-19.
“Our mentality towards certain very mild and minimal symptoms needs to be different from before, as those symptoms may be Covid-19. Let us make sure to protect ourselves and everyone else”, he concluded.