Slightly more than 10 percent of Taiwan’s population had as of yesterday been infected with COVID-19, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday, after Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) earlier said this would be an important milestone the nation had to reach before the number of daily cases could start to decline.
The total number of reported cases yesterday reached 2,342,794, slightly more than 10 percent of Taiwan’s total population of 23,319,776.
However, as many people infected with the Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2 are asymptomatic or have mild symptoms, the true number of cases might be higher, up to 20 to 30 percent of the population, experts said.
Taiwan yesterday reported a single-day high of 152 deaths from COVID-19, surpassing the previous record of 145 deaths on Sunday last week, the CECC said.
The center also reported 68,151 new confirmed cases, of which 68,118 were classified as domestic and 33 as imported.
Yesterday’s deaths were aged from one to in their 90s, the CECC said.
Seventy-one were unvaccinated and 144 had chronic illnesses or other severe diseases, the center said.
The youngest person who died was a one-year-old boy who was previously hospitalized for a congenital heart disease, CECC data showed.
Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Deputy Director-General Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥), who is the CECC’s spokesman, said the boy, who depended on a respirator for breathing due to his comorbidity, had difficulty breathing on Saturday last week, when he was administered a polymerase chain reaction test that showed he had COVID-19.
He developed pneumonia and was admitted to an intensive care unit, Chuang said.
Despite treatment with remdesivir, an antiviral drug, and antibiotics, he passed away on Wednesday, Chuang said.
CECC data showed that he was the 12th child aged under 10 to die from COVID-19 complications this year.
The CECC said that 155 previously reported cases had developed severe symptoms, while 341 others had developed moderate symptoms.
Of the 2,246,911 domestic cases recorded in Taiwan this year, 2,328 have been classified as severe and 4,705 as moderate, or 0.1 percent and 0.21 percent respectively of the total, CECC data showed.
All other cases were either asymptomatic or had mild symptoms, the CECC said.
The highest number of yesterday’s new cases were in New Taipei City with 9,820, followed by Kaohsiung with 9,657 and Taichung with 9,511, the data showed.
Taoyuan reported 6,926 cases, Tainan reported 5,631, Taipei reported 5,228, Changhua County posted 4,475, Pingtung County reported 2,737, Hsinchu County posted 1,949, Miaoli County reported 1,719, Hsinchu City reported 1,551, Yunlin County posted 1,407 and Nantou County reported 1,308, the data showed.
Yilan County reported 1,212 cases, Chiayi County posted 1,129, Keelung reported 1,024, Hualien County posted 1,019, Chiayi City reported 738, Taitung County reported 672, Penghu County posted 194, Kinmen County reported 185 and Lienchiang County had 26, the data showed.
Taiwan has reported 2,329,609 domestic infections since the pandemic began in early 2020.
With the 152 deaths reported yesterday, Taiwan’s cumulative number of confirmed COVID-19 fatalities rose to 2,815, the data showed.
Additional reporting by Wu Liang-yi
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