Lebanon registers 20 coronavirus deaths, 544 new cases

The total number of cases since the virus was first detected in the country in February last year rose to 533,685

  
People wait to get tested for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), at Rafik Hariri University Hospital, in Beirut, Lebanon January 4, 2021.

People wait to get tested for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), at Rafik Hariri University Hospital, in Beirut, Lebanon January 4, 2021.

REUTERS/Mohamed Azakir

BEIRUT: Lebanon registered 20 more coronavirus deaths and 544 new cases over the past 24 hours, the Health Ministry said Tuesday, as the country was set for a two-day lockdown over the Eid al-Fitr holiday.

The cases were detected among 16,889 tests, with only 12 cases found among travelers arriving from abroad. The average positivity rate throughout the last two weeks dropped to 7.6 percent.

The total number of cases since the virus was first detected in the country in February last year rose to 533,685, according to figures released by the Health Ministry. The total number of fatalities now stands at 7,527.

The statistics provided by the Health Ministry also show that 816 patients are currently hospitalized for COVID-19 and related complications, with 403 in the ICU and 118 requiring ventilators.

The Health Ministry also reported that 11,077 first-stage jabs and 593 second-round vaccinations were administered in the past 24 hours, bringing the cumulative number of inoculations since the Feb. 14 onset to 349,415 first-stage and 189,776 second-stage jabs so far.

Despite the gradual slowing down of COVID-19 deaths and cases this month, Lebanon will go into a strict lockdown for the Eid al-Fitr holiday that is expected to start Thursday. Experts say similar closures for religious holidays last month contrubuted to the fall in deaths and new cases.

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