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14 April, 2021
 
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Second thoughts as relaxation plan unravels

Health minister meets with experts as easing of restrictions is marred by high number of cases

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Health minister Constantinos Ioannou was due to consult with health experts online Tuesday during an emergency meeting, following alarming news over multiple chains of infection and a rise in daily cases amid a plan to relax measures gradually.

After government officials announced over 300 daily cases on Monday, the day more students went back to school during a second phase of relaxation, it was announced that Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou would be meeting with members of the pandemic task force to discuss the latest figures.

Local media said officials were having second thoughts as a plan for junior high students to return to class next week would be put on hold.

Health experts have learned that an educator in Limassol district could be 'patient zero' in a cluster involving 44 persons including students

Reports said a high number of daily cases not seen since February shocked health experts, who also learned that an educator in Limassol district could be “patient zero” in a cluster involving 44 persons including students.

During a further analysis of test results between 20 and 26 February, it emerged that 56 cases involved educators, 109 were elementary pupils, and 25 high school students.

According to Kathimerini Cyprus, the latest poor results were behind this week’s decision by the government to call on all returning high school students to take rapid tests on a weekly basis.

This week, following a Cabinet decision, classes for high school underclassmen in public and private institutions were open Monday to students who would agree with parental consent to undergo rapid tests once a week. The first and second year students were joining seniors who started going to school during an earlier phase.

But junior high school students, who were scheduled to return to class the following week, could end up staying home for now, with officials pushing their return date at least by a week to the middle of the month.

Health ministry officials had warned this week that steps to relax measures could be subject to continuous evaluation, with Ioannou saying the hope would be to avoid any major setbacks.

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Cyprus  |  health  |  pandemic  |  relaxation  |  infection  |  Ioannou  |  students  |  school

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