According to the epidemiological report for this Tuesday, December 15, there were 29 new deaths, of those 26 correspond to the last 24 hours and 3 to previous dates, which brings deaths to 3,411 from coronavirus in the country. The case fatality of the virus is 1.7%.
164,855 recovered patients are also reported.
To date, 13,424 tests were applied, for a percentage of positivity of 17.6%.
Active patients total 28,721, 27,205 people are reported in home isolation, of which 26,489 are at home and 716 in hotels. The hospitalized number 1,516 and of them 1,319 are in the ward and 197 in the ICU.
The Rt (effective reproduction number) rose from 1.18 to 1.21.
Some observers have argued that the Minsa reported case fatality rate (number of COVID linked deaths / number of known cases) in reality should be much lower, as the number of reported cases does not necessarily reflect the truth, as the testing does not cover the whole population, and many cases go undetected. At the same time, the government can't report what they don't know, but readers should note that the numbers may tell a different story from the reality.
Also, the method used in Panama to define how a "COVID death" is counted is also unclear, as many of the deaths correspond to underlying previous conditions, such as cancer, blood diseases, other age related diseases etc., and are reported as COVID deaths since the patient also had the coronavirus. On the other hand, many viruses are known to lower the patient's immunity and expose them to other diseases. As an example most HIV/AIDS patients don't die from the virus itself, but from other derived diseases such as pneumonia or regular flu.
There have also been reports on the inaccuracy of the PCR test, which would highly compromise any figures mentioned above.
In lack of better information sources, PanaTimes continues to report the government (Minsa) announced figures. Readers are adviced to use their own judgement.