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Personal médico en Panamá intensifica trazabilidad de pruebas de hisopado para detectar la COVID-19

Panama reports 1,750 new COVID-19 cases and 44 deaths in 24 hours

The Ministry of Health (Minsa) reported that Panama registered 1,750 new cases of COVID-19, raising to 298,019 infections of the virus nationwide.

According to the epidemiological report for this Sunday, January 17, in the last 24 hours there have been 44 new deaths and 5 updates, increasing deaths from coronavirus to 4,787.

The case fatality of the virus is 1.6%.

To date 9,663 tests have been applied, for a positivity percentage of 18.1% and 238,999 recovered patients from COVID-19 have been reported in the country.

Active cases total 54,233. In home isolation, 51,556 people are reported, of which 50,796 are at home and 760 in hotels.

In addition, there are 2,677 hospitalized and 2,444 of them are in the ward and 233 are in intensive care units.


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 compromise the figures mentioned above.

In lack of better information sources, PanaTimes continues to publish reports with the government (Minsa) announced figures. Readers are adviced to use their own judgement. We are happy to publish more accurate reports, if they become available to us or our contributors.


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