Cyprus’ Health Ministry says the spread of the U.K. variant of the coronavirus throughout the east Mediterranean island nation has marked an “alarming” increase, making up 95.5% of all new infections from Feb. 16 through Mar. 6.
The Ministry said statistics show that cases of the U.K. variant have more than doubled from the two-week period covering Feb. 1-Feb. 15.
It said various studies completed within several European countries have indicated that the U.K. variant is 50% more contagious. In Cyprus, it’s also appearing in younger COVID-19 patients which has resulted in more hospitalizations of younger people.
Between Mar. 10-Mar. 23, 5,093 new COVID-19 cases have been diagnosed. The 14-day cumulative diagnosis rate is 573.5 per 100,000 population.
As of Mar. 23, a total of 42,028 COVID-19 cases have been diagnosed on the island nation of around 900,000 people, of which 248 died due to COVID-19.