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Costa Rica begins new week without significant jump in COVID-19 cases

April 13, 2020

Costa Rica has surpassed 600 total cases of the novel coronavirus, the Health Ministry announced Monday afternoon.

The country has confirmed 612 total cases, a 17-person increase over the same time Sunday. Costa Rica has added 20 or fewer known cases in 10 of the last 11 days.

Twenty people are currently hospitalized with COVID-19 — 14 of them in intensive care. The age range of patients in intensive care is from 35 to 85 years old.

Three people have died after contracting COVID-19, and 62 people have recovered — six more than Sunday — meaning Costa Rica has 547 active cases.

The majority of Costa Rica’s known coronavirus cases are located in the provinces of San José and Alajuela. Below is a map of confirmed cases by canton. Click on a blue marker for more information:

Health Minister Daniel Salas issued a stern reminder that Costa Ricans should continue abiding by social distancing guidelines. People can be asymptomatic carriers of the coronavirus, he said.

“The behavior we have seen in the streets today is a bad omen,” Salas said. “The rebound [of people in the streets] has left us wondering what could happen in the coming days and weeks.”

Because the majority of Costa Ricans have yet to be exposed to the coronavirus, the country could still see a rapid growth in cases that overwhelms the its health system.

“Everything we are doing is so we don’t have to say ‘no’ and turn away someone who can’t breathe,” Salas said.

Because Costa Rica doesn’t produce its own PCR-based kits, it doesn’t have the capacity to conduct large-scale COVID-19 testing, according to the Health Ministry. However, the country has purchased or received donations of enough kits to process all suspected cases.

If you believe you may have contracted COVID-19 or have questions regarding the coronavirus, contact Costa Rican health authorities by dialing 1322.

Timeline of COVID-19 in Costa Rica

  • March 6: Costa Rica confirms first COVID-19 case.
  • March 9: Costa Rica suspends mass gatherings, tells employees to work from home.
  • March 16: Costa Rica declares State of Emergency, restricts entry to non-citizens and non-residents. In-person teaching suspended.
  • March 18: Costa Rica reports first COVID-19-related death.
  • March 20: Costa Rica reports second COVID-19-related death. All national parks close.
  • March 23: Beaches and religious centers ordered to close. Nighttime driving ban announced.
  • March 31: Costa Rica inaugurates coronavirus-specific hospital at CENARE.
  • April 4-12: Costa Rica imposes significant travel restrictions during Semana Santa.

Monday marked the beginning of Costa Rica’s new nationwide driving restrictions, which will last through the end of April. Click here for full details.

Official COVID-19 (coronavirus) data for Costa Rica.
Official COVID-19 (coronavirus) data for Costa Rica. Via the Health Ministry.

 

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