Costa Rica announced 11 new coronavirus-related deaths over the past day for a total of 98, according to official data released Saturday afternoon by the Health Ministry.
Two-hundred and ninety-three people are hospitalized with COVID-19, with 51 in intensive care, a new high.
The Health Ministry has confirmed 14,600 cumulative known coronavirus cases, 931 more than Friday.
Saturday’s 931 new cases, a record high, correspond only to people who have tested positive for SARS-CoV-2. In the future, the daily total could include those living in the same household as someone who has tested positive who themselves begin exhibiting symptoms.
One-hundred and thirty-five more people have been classified as recovered under Costa Rica’s definitions that qualify certain patients based on time rather than a negative test.
Costa Rica has 10,862 known active cases and 3,640 recoveries.
The data indicate Costa Rica has 1.92 COVID-19-related deaths per 100,000 people.
Most hospitalized patients have at least one risk factor, with hypertension, diabetes, obesity and smoking being the most common.
As of Friday, the most hospitalized coronavirus patients are at San Juan de Dios Hospital (75), the CEACO coronavirus-specific hospital (70) and Hospital México (70). Seventeen people with COVID-19 are at the Trauma Hospital, which was recently retrofitted with 48 beds for these patients.
Costa Rica expands capacity at Calderón Guardia
The new tower at Calderón Guardia Hospital in San José is ready to begin accepting coronavirus patients, announced Román Macaya, executive president of the Costa Rica Social Security System (CCSS).
Floors six and seven of the tower will be dedicated to coronavirus patients requiring intensive-care hospitalization.
The sixth floor has 32 beds that are ready for use; this capacity can be doubled as the hospital receives necessary equipment including monitors and ventilators.
The seventh floor features 11 cubicles for extreme isolation that were designed during the Ebola epidemic.
“The best way to not end up here is to follow measures — wear a mask, wash your hands, maintain physical distancing — and to take care of each other as a population,” said President Carlos Alvarado, when touring the building earlier this month.
An additional 50 beds in the north tower of the Calderón Guardia Hospital have been converted for intermediate coronavirus care.
“This demonstrates the Caja working as one,” Macaya said.
Active coronavirus cases in Costa Rica
The highest increase in new cases on Saturday were recorded in the cantons of San José, Desamparados, Alajuelita and Corredores.
The recent spike in cases corresponds with both an increase in testing and with a higher test-positivity rate, as shown in the below graph:
The Greater Metropolitan Area is the country’s current epicenter. Much of Costa Rica is under an Orange Alert; click here for details regarding current business and driving restrictions.
Costa Rica has processed 76,053 tests as of Friday.
The below graphic will update automatically when the Health Ministry releases detailed information on the number of tests processed and the location of new cases later this afternoon.
If you believe you have COVID-19, contact Costa Rica’s hotline at 1322. English-speaking staff and mental health professionals are available.