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Doctors concerned about rate of Covid-19 hospital admissions; Attica ICU bed occupancy at 83 pct

Doctors concerned about rate of Covid-19 hospital admissions; Attica ICU bed occupancy at 83 pct
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The dispersion rate of the novel coronavirus remains high in Greece - especially in Attica Region, where active infections total 5,100 - and this fact has heightened the concerns of scientists, pediatric infectious diseases doctor Vana Papaevangelou said on Friday.

During a regular live briefing, the member of the Health Ministry's coronavirus experts committee said that during the past week the average rate of new infections was 11 per 100,000 population. Nationally, active infections are estimated at around 10,000 in total, while their real number is higher if those without symptoms are added.

The average positivity of diagnostic tests has risen to 2.8 percent, she noted, while the infection rate of those aged 20-60 has also risen. As she pointed out, this is the age group that is most frequently out and about.

As far as current data is concerned, she said that a total of 1,900 people have been hospitalized with Covid-19. Hospital admissions rates have reached 200 per day on a national level and the number of people on ventilators has rise by 67 pct. In Attica Region, the current occupancy of Covid-19 beds in ICUs is 83 pct.

Another committee member and infectious disease specialist, Gkikas Magiorkinis, said at the same briefing that, according to preliminary data, additional restrictive measures in Attica Region - including the Athens metropolis - have begun to show results, but this will become clearer in around 10 days.

Magiorkinis said a mild rise was expected in ICU admissions in the next two weeks. In Thessaloniki, infections are showing a stabilizing trend, and hospitalization rates are not expected to rise abruptly.

Meanwhile, the number of diagnostic tests (both rapid and molecular/PCR ones) have been increasing on a per-day basis, Alternate Health Education Minister Vassilis Kondozamanis said at the briefing. Compared to January, the number of PCR tests in February have risen by 84 pct.

Rapid-result tests are not of lesser quality, "on the contrary, the fact someone will get the result within 15 minutes," leading to a direct change in behavior, is beneficial in itself, Magiorkinis clarified in response to a question later on.