Watch: Coronavirus briefing – one new case, 26 recover; 195 active cases from total of 448
watch coronavirus briefing one new case 26 recover 195 active cases from total of 448 - Watch: Coronavirus briefing - one new case, 26 recover; 195 active cases from total of 448

Health Superintendent Charmaine Gauci said that one new case of Coronavirus was registered in the last 24 hours, with 26 patients recovering.

At the start of the briefing, Gauci gaver her condolences to the family of a 96-year-old woman who passed away during the night.

She had tested positive to Coronavirus but suffered from other chronic conditions. The woman was the fourth Coronavirus victim since the first case was registered on 7 March.

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She said that the total number of cases is now 448, of whom 249 have recovered. There have been four deaths while the number of active cases is now 195.

The people who recovered were: one aged under 10 years, five in their 20s, and four patients each in their 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s.

The only person who tested positive in the last 24 hours was a 52-year-old man, Gauci said.

Asked by The Malta Independent on whether the fourth coronavirus death died due to the coronavirus or whether the disease worsened her chronic complications, Gauci said that “in such a situation there are many elderly people who already have a number complications, therefore when you have an infection or any other virus, apart from the coronavirus, the situation will be worsened.”

She added that this is why “it is important to take care of the vulnerable and to stay at home as much as possible.”  

Gauci said that “the health authorities are working with diverse teams including different levels of management and decision structures. These are all combined and working together.”

Gauci also explained about the technology that was mentioned by Health Minister Chris Fearne regarding contact tracing and said that “this is an application which enables to make contact tracing more immediate, more detailed and more accurate.” She added that “work is currently underway by the data management, I.T. team and other entities within the government on how to develop this application. The European Union and the data commissioner is also giving guidance and help on how to make this application work.”

Asked on how long the virus remains active in the human body, Gauci said that with regard “to the antibody response of people several studies are taking place and we are still following.”

Gauci addressed people who suffer from allergies at this time of the year, saying that “if one sees that the allergy is more severe than usual, or is developing more symptoms, one should contact the helpline 111 to clarify and identify whether it is the coronavirus or not.”

Gauci said that overnight a large consignment of protective clothing for workers arrived in Malta. She remarked that we “must understand, this has become very difficult to acquire since the whole world is experiencing the coronavirus, thus there is a high demand of protective equipment.”

In addition, there are a number of people who are positive to the virus but who do not have any symptoms, Gauci explained that “these patients are being constantly monitored in order to identify whether they develop any symptoms or not.”

Gauci reminded the public that “when one decides to go outside, one must remain in groups of no more than three, and also abide by the measure of social distancing – two metres away from each other.” She added that “if households – a private place – are gathering in crowds of more than three, they are then risking one another, and are also putting the people who were invited at risk.” 

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