2020.03.27 09:21

Covid-19 cases in Lithuania climb to 358, fifth death confirmed

updated, BNS 2020.03.27 09:21

Thirteen new cases of the coronavirus were confirmed in Lithuania on Friday evening, bringing the country's total to 358, the Health Ministry said on. Earlier on Friday, a man with Covid-19 passed away in Klaipėda, the town's mayor said.

The 13 new cases include a medic who works at the Žalgiris Clinic in Vilnius, according to the Health Ministry. The person may have been infected from a colleague, who was diagnosed with the coronavirus earlier this week.

Vytautas Grubliauskas, the mayor of Klaipėda, said earlier on Friday that 13 new cases were diagnosed with Covid-19 in his town and one person passed away, though the virus may not have been the direct cause of death.

“Last night, a 94-year-old patient died in [Klaipėda University] Hospital, who had many chronic conditions, but was also diagnosed with Covid-19,” Grubliauskas posted on Facebook. “He was treated at the Ophthalmology Ward. I cannot judge myself, but doctors say that the cause of death wasn't the virus.”

The Minsitry of Health later announced that a person died from the coronavirus at Klaipėda University Hospital on Friday morning.

Previously, four coronavirus deaths were reported in Lithuania.

Out of the total 5,593 people tested for the coronavirus in Lithuania, 1,273 were tested on Thursday alone.

Government representatives claim Covid-19 testing will be expanded in the country after a large shipment of 300,000 reagents necessary for tests reached Lithuania on Thursday night.

The plane bringing the shipment from China landed in Vilnius at 22:10, the Health Ministry told BNS. The reagents will now be distributed among laboratories across the country.

The Thursday shipment is the largest received so far, the ministry noted. Before noon on Thursday, 10,000 reagents were also delivered to Lithuania from South Korea.

There were only 700 testing reagents left in Lithuania on March 22.

Four new coronavirus cases confirmed within NATO battalion in Lithuania

Four new coronavirus cases were confirmed on Thursday within the international NATO battalion stationed in Lithuania.

"The total number of cases is 24," Dutch Captain Evert-Jan Daniels, spokesman for the Enhanced Forward Presence (EFP) battalion, told BNS on Thursday night.

The troops who tested positive for the virus were later moved from Rukla to Pabradė, where they are isolated to limit the spread of the virus, he said.

Daniels did not specify the nationality of the infected soldiers. Meanwhile, two infected Dutch troops were flown back to the Netherlands earlier this week.

The German-led NATO battalion, part of the Alliance's Enhanced Forward Presence (EFP), includes units from Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Iceland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and Norway.