Croatia’s Covid case counts and hospitalization rates hit nine-month low

NEWS 20.05.2022 13:43
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Source: Photo by Elizabeth McDaniel on Unsplash

Croatia's health authorities reported on Friday that 426 new cases of the coronavirus and 4 Covid-related deaths have been recorded in the country over the previous 24 hours.

The rolling seven-day case count now stands at 3,003 – or on average 429 per day, a nearly 26-percent drop compared to the seven days prior. The 14-day case count is now 7,064, or 505 cases per day, about 30 percent down from the the previous two-week period.

On Friday, the rolling seven-day death count was 34, down from 46 deaths reported in the week prior. There are currently 3,556 active cases in the country, including 273 Covid patients in hospital care. Hospitalization rates and weekly caseloads are at the lowest level since late August 2021, nine months ago.

To date, Croatia has registered more than 1.13 million coronavirus cases, and the total pandemic-related death toll now stands at 15,954. This amounts to an average of about 19.6 deaths per day since the first case was detected in Croatia, on February 25, 2020.

Some 2.31 million Croatians have received at least one shot of any Covid-19 vaccine to date, which health authorities say translates to 59.5 percent of the country’s entire population. This is the calculation released by health authorities which project the current population size at 3.88 million, in line with the results from the 2021 census results released in January.

This figure includes close to 2.24 million Croatians who have been fully immunized against the disease, which health services now say translates to around 68.7 percent of all adults, implying that there are currently some 3.26 million Croatians aged 18 and above living in the country.

Although the vaccination numbers have been largely unchanged for some time now, the slight increase in percentages in early April seems to have come from a change in methodology, as up until recently the authorities used outdated estimates saying that the country has close to 4.1 million people, including 3.4 million adults.

Even though the vaccines are widely available and free of charge, the interest in vaccines among pandemic-fatigued Croatians is reportedly very low. On Thursday authorities reported that only 383 vaccine shots had been administered in the entire country that day, including 25 first-timers. Booster shots have been available since December 2021, but authorities do not include these statistics in their daily reports.

The daily numbers come from official reports which only account for cases confirmed by PCR tests and which are reported daily to the World Health Organization and other international agencies. Positive results detected via rapid antigen testing (RATs), including at-home tests, are reported and tracked via a separate registry. These are sometimes leaked to the local media who conflate these with officially confirmed figures, creating considerable discrepancies in their reporting.

Due to the low intensity of reported cases, the government scrapped nearly all pandemic rules in April, which included ending nearly all face mask rules and also Covid passes which were required for using any public administration service. However, masks are still required in some public areas, mainly in hospitals and in retirement homes. All pandemic-related travel restrictions for foreign nationals have also been dropped in early May.

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