In the past 24 hours Bulgaria registered a recorded high number of COVID-19 deaths. 23 people with the virus died since yesterday, bringing the total fatalities to 915. The number of new daily cases also spiked to 587. The 587 positive PCR tests make up 13.6% of the total number of tests processed in the past day, 4320.
According to the Ministry of Healthcare, the nearly-600 newly discovered cases are due to a weekend lag in processing new tests, i.e. the number would have been lower if it were the middle or end of the week. However, at the end of last week the country also registered between 500 and 600 daily cases, which is almost twice the number of the most registered cases in a day before last week. Then, the record high was about 350, and the several 250-300 post-summer instances were considered unusually and dangerously high.
The total number of registered coronavirus infection is Bulgaria since the beginning of the pandemic are now 24989. 8099 of those are currently active, 15975 have recovered from the virus.
1221 patients with COVID-19 are receiving treatment in hospital, 65 of them are in ICUs.
Although daily cases, and especially death and hospitalization rates have been steadily rising in Bulgaria since the end of summer, the Ministry of Healthcare denied the need for measures to slow the rate of spread of the novel coronavirus.
"The development of the disease in under control," Deputy Minister of Healthcare Boyko Penkov told the Bulgarian National Television.
"We are following everything closely. The infection is spreading in clusters – certain collectives, manufactures, medical facilities, social services’ facilities. The high numbers at once come from those. We have imposed certain restrictions in public spaces to slow the spread of the virus, which [the people] are following" Penkov said but failed to elaborate further, given the fact the government systemically rejects the possibility of introducing further social distancing measures.
Bulgaria started off with one of the strictest lockdown rules in March, when the first coronavirus cases were registered. This went on till May when the government began lifting restrictions to the point of having almost none, except for mandatory mask wearing in closed public spaces and quarantine for people with confirmed infection, contact people or traveling from certain countries.
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