Yerevan Encouraged by Drop in Coronavirus Spread

Armenia's Health Minister Arsen Torosyan (center) confers with healthcare professionals
Armenia's Health Minister Arsen Torosyan (center) confers with healthcare professionals

Armenia’s Health Minister Arsen Torosyan (center) confers with healthcare professionals

Armenia’s officials on Monday sounded encouraged at a drop in the rate by which the coronavirus was spreading in the country, but urged the public to strictly observe the guidelines in place to stem the growth of the virus.

Armenia’s Health Minister Arsen Torosyan said that only 11 cases were reported Sunday, compared to the staggering rates in previous days, which has brought the confirmed coronavirus cases in Armenia to 833.

“We should continue the observing the nationwide guidelines that will help to keep this number and lower it further,” said Torosyan in a Facebook post. “We should double our efforts to break the rate until we are confident that there is no more danger of large-scale spread. I urge you not to leave home unnecessarily. Only go to the store, the pharmacy, etc.”

During his daily briefing on Monday, Torosyan said that 400 people had been released from quarantine, and the number is growing. He added, however, that about 1,500 people in Armenia remain in quarantine, while another 5,000 have been instructed to self-isolate].

According to the minister, most patients diagnosed with COVID-19 show no symptoms and have no fever. He added that 146 people have pneumonia, 30 need lung ventilation and eight patients need intensive care.
Of the confirmed 833 cases in Armenia, Torosyan said, 62 have recovered and eight hav died.

Meanwhile, Armenia’s Deputy Police Chief Hayk Mhryan announced that six officers of the national police force have been diagnosed with the coronavirus, while 11 are in isolation.

Also sounding upbeat about the daily decline of the infections rates in Armenia was Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan who on Monday said his government was considering the production of COVID-19 test kits.

In a live Facebook question and answer session, Pashinyan said the government had allocated $550,000 for this project, with the funds going to the Institute of Molecular Biology to buy raw materials and set up the production.

“Specialists have assured me that it is possible to organize the production of tests at the Institute,” Pashinyan said, adding that the government has spend large sums in acquiring test kits and plans to test 1,000 per day—a sharp increase from the 200 to 400 people who currently are tested.

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