Coronavirus round-up: December 21-27 ({{contentCtrl.commentsTotal}})

The first COVID-19 vaccines administered at Tartu University Hospital and University Family Doctors' Center.
The first COVID-19 vaccines administered at Tartu University Hospital and University Family Doctors' Center. Source: Jassu Hertsmann

Last week 3,730 cases of coronavirus were diagnosed in Estonia - 31 cases more than the week before. There were 32 deaths, the highest in a single week so far.

ERR News has rounded up the most important news and data about the coronavirus in Estonia from the last week and put it in one place.

This round-up is released every Monday, because the results for Sunday of the previous week are released on Monday morning, only making it possible to analyze the previous week's results after the data has been reported.

You can find the following graphs below:

  • The total number of new cases diagnosed by week;
  • New cases by day for December 21-27;
  • New cases by county by week;
  • New cases compared with deaths and hospital releases;
  • Total number of positive and negative tests by week;
  • Deaths by age group.

The data has been taken from the Health Board and we downloaded it from Koroonakaart which publishes data every day in English, Russian and Estonian.

Our "Coronavirus in Estonia: All You Need to Know" guide also provides an overview of total cases by county, the daily rate of new cases, and includes a breakdown of all the restrictions so far. We update this page daily.

In the graphs below, you can add or take away data from the graphs by clicking on the colored dots below. The data points are (mostly) dated with each Monday's date.

Overview

On Saturday the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine arrived in Estonia and vaccinations started on Sunday. By the end of the day, 207 shots had been administered in Tallinn, Tartu and Ida-Viru County to health care workers. The first person to receive the injection was 24-year-old resident-doctor Jelena Rozinko in Kohtla-Järve.

Estonia's first COVID-19 vaccine was given to resident-doctor Jelena Rozinko in Kohtla-Järve in Ida-Viru County on December 27. Source: Sergei Stepanov/ERR

Experts are predicting the health care system will be struggling in January due to an increase in hospitalized COVID-19 patients and staff catching the infection.

New restrictions came into force in Harju County on Monday (December 28), were agreed last week, which sees entertainment venues, gyms and restaurants shuttered until the middle of January. The rate of infection has not fallen in Tallinn which has led to the new restrictions.

The Baltic states agreed to suspend flights to and from the United Kingdom until December 31 after the announcement of a mutant strain of the virus. Repatriation flights have been jointly organized by the three countries.

New cases by week: Last week 3,730 new cases of coronavirus were diagnosed in Estonia the smallest weekly increase - only 31 additional cases compared to the week before - since mid-October. This was likely to have been caused by fewer people getting tested over the Christmas period.

While the case numbers stabilized, the number of deaths increased from 27 to 32, a new weekly record.

There are currently 431 people in hospital, which means Estonia is nearing capacity and scheduled treatment may soon have to be rearranged.

The 14-day infection rate is 558.7 per 100,000 compared to 537.11 last Monday. 

New cases by day December 21-27: The highest number of new cases reported last week was 698 and the lowest 370. No new records were set for high numbers of cases and no day recorded more than 700 cases.

Looking at the graph, you can see the number of cases dipped over the three national holidays - December 24, 25 and 26 - so fewer people may have been tested.

As mentioned above, there were 32 deaths.

New cases by county: There were new cases reported in every county last week, you can see exactly how many and where on the map below. The majority of the new cases were diagnosed in Harju, Ida-Viru, Tartu and Pärnu counties but Lääne-Viru and Järve counties also saw their cases increase.

Similar to the previous two weeks, cases rose in Harju County but fell or plateaued in Tartu and Ida-Viru County. Cases fell in Pärnu County for the first time in three weeks.

Harju County's cases rose from 2,139 to 2,241, the increase of approximately 100 cases is smaller than the previous two weeks which were both over 300. The majority of cases were diagnosed in Tallinn and the rest were recorded throughout the county.

Ida-Viru County's number of cases fell from 699 to 617, falling for the third week in a row. Tartu County's cases fell from 217 to 176 and Pärnu County's cases fell from 168 to 123.

Saare County's cases rose to 20 from 31 while Võru County's stayed at 48, the same as the week before.

The number of cases in Lääne-Viru County rose from 69 to 136 and Järva County's from 51 to 71.

The Health Board has stopped publishing data about outbreaks, so it is not possible to tell where outbreaks are taking place or in what circles but there are currently several outbreaks in care homes in Ida-Viru and Lääne-Viru counties.

You can add or take away data from the graph by clicking on the colored dots at the bottom. The six counties included on the graph have the highest numbers of cases in total. 

Hospital releases: 181 COVID-19 patients were released from hospital this week, a record high but, as in previous weeks, the number of COVID-19 patients now in hospital is at an all-time high.

Last Monday, 381 people are being treated in hospital but as of today (December 28) there are 431 patients being treated for coronavirus. Health experts have said there is only capacity to treat between 350 and 450 people.

Positive and negative tests by week: There were fewer tests carried out this week, most likely due to the Christmas period. In total, 30,825 tests were analyzed which is the lowest since mid-November. There were 3,730 positive tests recorded and 27,095 negatives.

The significant rise in tests over the past six weeks is because the Health Board now reports all tests analyzed on a single day not only primary tests.

Deaths

Deaths by week: Last week 32 people died due to coronavirus in Estonia, the highest number in a single week.

Coronavirus highlights December 21-27: 

"Let's keep Estonia open!"

The Health Board launched a new campaign called "Let's keep Estonia open!" ("Hoiame Eesti elu avatud!") this week, which calls for the people of Estonia to follow five basic principles:

  • Stay at home if you have fallen ill;
  • Stay at least two meters away from other people;
  • Wear a mask in crowded places;
  • Wash your hands diligently;
  • Download the HOIA app onto your smartphone;
  • Get your information from reliable sources, such as kriis.ee, the Health Board or contact the free 1247 helpline.

The spread of coronavirus in Estonia is extensive and rapid, which means that it is possible to get infected anywhere you may come in to contact with others.

If possible, choose electronic channels and online services for running your errands. Run as many of your errands as possible via electronic channels which will allow you to avoid unnecessary contact with others and reduce the risk of your being infected.

If you experience any symptoms, please stay at home.

Download HOIA

Estonia's coronavirus exposure notification app HOIA will alert you if you have been in close contact with someone who later tests positive for coronavirus.

The free app can be downloaded at the Google Play Store or App Store. Read ERR News' feature about the app here. 

Note to readers

Feedback is welcome, as are suggestions for data we can show or stories we can tell. Email: helen.wright@err.ee

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Editor: Helen Wright

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