Czech Republic coronavirus updates, October 16: another record as daily increase in COVID-19 cases nears 10,000

There were 9,721 new COVID-19 cases reported in the Czech Republic yesterday, setting a new record high for the second straight day

Jason Pirodsky

Written by Jason Pirodsky
Published on 16.10.2020 09:23 (updated on 16.10.2020)

The Czech Republic has set a new daily high with 9,721 COVID-19 cases reported on Thursday, according to the latest data published by the Czech Health Ministry this morning.

For the second straight day, the country has reported a record number of new daily COVID-19 cases, after hitting 9,544 on Wednesday. The number of daily COVID-19 cases reported in the Czech Republic has roughly tripled over the past two weeks, after reaching a then-high of 3,794 on October 2.

The number of daily COVID-19 tests performed is also rising, with new highs of 31,019 on Tuesday and 34,612 on Wednesday. The number of tests performed Thursday will be updated later today.

In recent days, around 25-30% of tests conducted have come back positive for COVID-19. Before October, that percentage had reached a high of around 15% at the beginning of the epidemic in March.

There are currently 84,430 known active COVID-19 cases in the Czech Republic. Since March, the country has reported a total of 149,010 cases.

The Czech Republic remains the most affected state in the European Union, according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. The country leads the EU in both the number of COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents (661) and the number of COVID-19-related deaths per 100,000 residents (4.9) over the past 14 days. Belgium (515 cases per 100,000 residents) and the Netherlands (435 cases) follow.

The number of COVID-19 patients requiring hospitalization in the Czech Republic is also sharply rising, having roughly tripled since the beginning of the month. There are now 2,920 COVID-19 patients in Czech hospitals, 543 of whom are in serious condition.

The number of COVID-19-related deaths reported in the Czech Republic has also surged over the past weeks, with a record high of 63 deaths on Monday and 58 on Wednesday; 24 deaths have been attributed to Thursday so far, bringing the total number since March to 1,230. In October alone, there have been 559 COVID-19-related deaths.

Prague reported 1,149 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, less than the previous day but still the third-highest number of daily cases since the start of the epidemic. There are currently 14,800 known COVID-19 infections in the Czech capital, roughly 398 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents over the past seven days.

Still, the rate of COVID-19 cases in other localities is rising faster. Plzeň (610 new cases per 100,000 residents over the past week) has now become the most-affected area, followed by Uherské Hradiště (607 cases), Příbram (546), Liberec (533) and Zlín (519).

To help deal with the surge in new COVID-19 cases, additional beds for patients who may require them are being set up outside of hospitals around the country. This weekend, the Czech military will set up out-of-hospital beds for COVID-19 patients at Prague's Letňany exhibition grounds.

Germany has also offered assistance in treating Czech COVID-19 patients.

The new measures include the closure of all restaurants, bars, and clubs, a limit on public gatherings to a maximum of six people, and a ban on consuming alcohol in public places.

From Monday, all cinemas, theaters, concert halls, and other venues providing cultural and leisure activities have also been closed. Gyms and pools have been closed since last Friday.

Schools throughout the country have also switched to distance learning, with the exception of kindergartens.

Officials urge all residents to comply with the new measures in order to effectively curb the spread of COVID-19 in the country. Earlier this week, Prague police officers uncovered a bar that was operating outside of the permitted hours, and fined many of its 35 patrons.