The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported 52,992 local COVID-19 infections and 151 deaths, including the first teenager to die of the disease.
The local case count was lower than the previous days, but that could partly be attributed to fewer people seeing a doctor during the Dragon Boat Festival long weekend, said Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Director-General Chou Jih-haw (周志浩), head of the CECC’s disease surveillance division.
There were 243 new moderate-to-severe cases, he added.
Photo courtesy of Fu Jen Catholic University Hospital
Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that the seven-day average of new local cases showed that daily numbers have begun to drop after the nation’s infection rate surpassed 10 percent.
A breakdown by regions showed that the daily new cases in Taipei and New Taipei City, where the infection rate has reached over 14 percent, and northern Taiwan in general, where the infection rate has exceeded 12 percent, clearly started declining after hitting 10 percent, he said.
The daily caseloads in eastern Taiwan have also dropped slightly as the infection rate has surpassed 10 percent, he said.
However, daily case numbers are still growing in central and southern Taiwan, where the infection rate is about 8 percent and 6 percent respectively, he added.
CDC Deputy Director-General Philip Lo (羅一鈞), deputy head of the CECC’s medical response division, said that among the 151 deaths reported yesterday, 146 people had underlying health conditions, 110 people did not receive a booster dose of vaccine and 87 people were aged 80 or older.
One of the deaths was an eight-month-old infant, who had congenital urinary tract disorders and had undergone several surgeries. She tested positive when she sought treatment for a fever and suspected stoma leakage on Tuesday last week.
After being admitted to an intensive care unit after another surgery on Wednesday last week, her blood pressure dropped, and she died of bacterial and COVID-19 infection and sepsis, Lo said.
There have been three cases of sepsis in children with COVID-19, two of whom had passed away, he added.
Another death was a 15-year-old boy, who had received one COVID-19 vaccine shot and did not have underlying health conditions, he said.
The boy developed a fever on May 20, tested positive for COVID-19 on May 22, and was under home care between May 22 and May 29, he said.
He fell unconscious when he returned to school on Monday last week and had no vital signs when he arrived in a hospital, Lo said.
The cause of death was listed as myocarditis, pulmonary edema and COVID-19 infection, he said.
So far, there have been two severe cases of COVID-19 among teens aged 13 to 18 — the other case being a 15-year-old girl who tested positive in late April, Lo said.
She has a chronic nervous system disease, and had pneumonia and difficulty breathing, but recovered after treatment, he said.
Chen said that as of Sunday, the nation’s first, second and first booster dose vaccination rates had reached 90.07 percent, 82.06 percent, and 66.49 percent respectively.
Among community coverage rates — vaccination rate plus infection rate — of children aged five to 11 across the nation, Pingtung County had the highest rate at 91.7 percent, followed by Yunlin County at 90.2 percent and Chiayi County at 89.5 percent, he said.
The nation’s average community coverage rate is 74.2 percent, which is relatively high compared with other countries, Chen added.
Additional reporting by CNA
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