The Limassol General Hospital, the island’s second largest hospital, went into lockdown on Thursday after a paediatrician and a managerial member of staff tested positive for coronavirus, with the state health services urging the public avoid attempts to enter the hospital.
The state health services said that all relevant protocols have been activated, according to which the public is banned from entering the hospital, though a skeleton crew of Limassol General Hospital staff remained at their posts as per Government orders.
Cyprus' largest hospital, the Nicosia General Hospital, had also been placed in lockdown for two days at the beginning of the coronavirus oubtreak in early March, as the 64-year-old head of Cardiac Surgery had tested positive for the virus.
On Wednesay, the total number of confirmed cases rose to 58 in the government-controlled areas, and to 20 in the north, bringing the total to 78 islandwide.
Medical authorities were scrambling to locate all contacts of the paediatrician by going through her appointment schedule, with several people already under self-isolation and awaiting test results.
The Executive Director of the state health services for the Limassol and Paphos districts, Christos Nicolaou, also tested positive for the virus, and has been isolated in his home.
Speaking on a television news programme, Nicolaou said that a preliminary coronavirus test showed he was “borderline positive” for the virus, and will be submitted to a follow-up test on Thursday afternoon which is expected to show a clearer picture of his condition.
Nicolaou said he remains completely asymptomatic, and that his fellow managerial colleagues with whom he had close contact have tested negative for the virus.
Paphos General Hospital remains shut, one more staff member tests positive
Also among the nine new coronavirus cases that were confirmed on Wednesday was a medic at the Paphos General Hospital, which remains shut since Sunday when the first cases of coronavirus were identified in the hospital’s Intensive Care Unit.
The new case is the 12th to test positive within Paphos General Hospital grounds, after ICU doctors, nurses, patients, and a cleaner were found to have caught the virus from a 65-year-old who that being treated at the ICU.
Samples continued to be taken at feverish speeds from the bulk of Paphos General staff, some 680 people, as fears persist over a wide spread of the virus across the Paphos hospital.
By Thursday, samples had been taken from a sum of 360 staff and 50 patients, with results coming in steadily.
Only the Accident and Emergency Department and the Hemodialysis Unit remain operational in the Paphos General.
Paphos private hospital goes into lockdown after doctor tests positive for the virus
A private hospital in Paphos was also placed in lockdown on Thursday after a doctor tested positive for coronavirus, the hospital's Director announced.
Samples have been taken from the entirety of the hospital's staff and patients, to assess whether more have been infected.
Efforts to locate the doctor's contacts have already begun, while doctors who had been in close contact with the confirmed case have been isolated.
Patients of the hospital are being treated by the remaining staff, the Director said, noting that the hospital will not be accepting any new admissions.
The Director expressed hope that the hospital can re-open on Saturday at the latest, should the samples sent for tests emerge negative for coronavirus.