2020.04.22 09:30

Coronavirus: 20 new cases, ‘record low’ share of positive tests

updated, BNS 2020.04.22 09:30

Twenty new coronavirus cases were confirmed in Lithuania over Tuesday, bringing the total number to 1,370, the Health Ministry confirmed on Wednesday morning.

In all, 6,040 samples were tested on Tuesday.

“A record-high number of laboratory tests – over 6,000 – have been carried out over the past 24 hours and the percentage of positive Covid-19 tests was record-low, around 0.3 percent from the total number of tested people,” Health Minister Aurelijus Veryga commented in a press conference on Wednesday.

He added that it was a sign that Lithuania was dealing with the epidemic “fairly well”.

So far, 38 people have died of the new coronavirus in Lithuania and 357 people are considered to have recovered from it.

There are currently 17 Covid-19 patients treated in intensive care, 42 need oxygen therapy and 147 are in hospitals, Audrius Ščeponavičius, the director of the Public Health Department at the Health Ministry, told LRT RADIO on Wednesday morning.

Rolanda Lingienė, director of the National Public Health Centre's Vilnius Department, later updated the figures.

“We have 121 people in hospitals, nine are on ventilators and 38 are with oxygen masks. Nineteen people are in intensive care,” Lingienė told a press conference on Wednesday.

General population to be tested

There are plans to test the general population for the coronavirus, according to Ščeponavičius.

“Several thousand people, a statistical cross-section of the Lithuanian population, will be selected [...] and tested for Covid-19,” he said.

The results would indicate the general level of immunity in the population, he added.

“This is important to plan the stages of easing the quarantine and see whether our healthcare system would not be overwhelmed when some restrictions are lifted,” according to Ščeponavičius.

Covid-19 at 56 medical institutions

Coronavirus cases have been reported at 56 medical establishments in Lithuania, Lingienė said on Wednesday.

“The good news is that there's only one case [each] in 40 of them,” she said.

Four establishments, however, have reported several dozen coronavirus cases.

“We've had 68 cases at Klaipėda University Hospital, 39 cases at Ukmergė Hospital, 32 cases at Marijampolė Hospital and 23 cases at Klaipėda Seamen's Hospital. We also have numbers that practically paralyse these hospitals,” Lingienė said.

Entire wards in these hospitals get closed down, she said, and they are now holding consultations with the National Public Health Centre how to reopen them.