In Panama this Tuesday, January 19, 2,173 new cases of COVID-19 have been registered, which raised the accumulated number of infections to 301,534.
The epidemiological report of the Ministry of Health (Minsa) also noted that there were 31 new deaths and 5 deaths that were updated from other days, which increased deaths from coronavirus to 4,864.
The case fatality rate of the virus is 1.6%.
The cases recovered in Panama are presented in 243,157; while active cases are reported in 53,513.
This statistic shows that 50,211 people are isolated at home and another 705 people are staying in hospital hotels.
While 2,356 patients are confined in hospital wards and 241 remain in intensive care units.
In the last hours in Panama some 13,046 new tests have been carried out, which registered 16.6% positivity.
NOTE: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.