Health Board: New restrictions established too late

It appears from the Health Board's (Terviseamet) epidemiological overview that the government established its latest restrictions, which came into effect Monday, too late. In four counties - Põlva, Järva, Viljandi and Järva, a record number of infected people have been identified.

Last week, 57,434 coronavirus tests were undertaken. 21 percent of these tests returned positive, which is four percentage points more than the week before last.

The largest amount of positive tests belongs to Viljandi (28.4 percent), Pärnu County (27.9) and Põlva County (27 percent).

The infection R rate remains at around 1.2 across Estonia. R is clearly in an upward trend in the northern region (from 1.12 to 1.2) and in the southern region (from 1.14 to 1.2). In the western region, the increase is smaller (from 1.18 to 2) and the rate is the same in the eastern region as it was last week (1.8).

According to the risk matrix which takes into account the weekly number of hospitalized patients and infected people, the risk of the virus spreading in Estonia is high.

Number of infected people setting records

Infection is increasing across all counties. The Health Board has noticed a fast increase in infected people in Saaremaa (87,9 percent), Hiiumaa (52,1) and Lääne County (51,5).

Record rates were registered in Põlva County (2722,4) and Pärnu County (2459,8). This week, Viljandi (2,318) and Järva County (2157,5).

Since the R is still over one, figures are expected to increase in the coming weeks. This week, a record number of 13,000 infected people is expected.

New restrictions established too late

Last week, infection numbers in all age groups increased, expect from 10-14. The increase was the highest among the age group of 75-79 (64 percent), 80+ (60 percent), 20-24 (50 percent) and 0-4 (45 percent).

The absolute number of infected people and infections per 100,000 people is still the highest among the age group of 10-14.

According to the Health Board's estimation, the restrictions were established too late and the number of infected people and the spread of the virus are extensive. Based on previous experiences, the R rate will increase after the short school holiday.

The need for hospital treatment will also increase as there is a significant increase in infection among the elderly.

The number of people needing hospital treatment will rise to 600 this week, to 740 by the middle of November and to 800 by the end of November. In this light, the growth should be stopped immediately.

Sites of infection are the same

Compared to last week, sites of infection have remained the same: getting infected in a family increased from 38,4 percent to 41. Infections sourced in schools and nurseries decreased from 15.8 to 7.9 percent, last week.

7 percent were infected at work (8 percent a week earlier), and patients in health care institutions accounted for 5.2 percent of those infected (3.9 last week). In the circle of friends, 2.7 percent were infected and 2.2 percent abroad.

Infections remained low at hobby and entertainment events: 1 percent and 2 percent in other locations (including the Defense Forces, detention facilities, and public transportation).

The origin of infection is unknown in 26.3 percent of cases.

The number of outbreaks is increasing and is related to schools

Last week, 14 new outbreaks were identified and now, there are around 230 outbreaks. Most outbreaks are associated with schools and the majority of the infected people are children.

The cumulative number of infected people in all outbreaks is 4,399 (3,722).

641 new cases have been registered in childcare facilities and 594 in care homes. Health care facilities had 97 new cases.

The number of outbreaks being monitored is steadily high and in an increasing trend. Last week, 131 outbreaks were monitored in schools (125 a week before). There are school outbreaks in all regions, but most of them are in North Estonia.

As of 31 October, the Health Board is monitoring 32 care home outbreaks and most care home outbreaks are in South Estonia. Last week, 285 care home residents were infected with the coronavirus, 14 were hospitalized and three died.

250 cases brought in from abroad were registered. Most cases have come from Turkey (65), Russia (38) and Finland (35).

The number of hospitalized elderly people increased

The average age of hospitalized patients is 70. The percentage of patients over 60-years-old is 76,9. People over 80 years old make up a third of all hospitalized patients.

Last week 69 people aged 35-97 died. All people had co-occurring illnesses.

Vaccination is increasing significantly

The number of vaccine doses administered increased significantly last week. 44,451 doses were administered (32,402 doses the previous week).

Of the people who completed the vaccination course, 44,322 people received one additional or booster dose and 61 people received two additional or booster doses.


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Editor: Roberta Vaino

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