Buenos Aires City reported 659 new cases of Covid-19 on Monday morning, the ninth day in a row that the federal capital has reported less than 1,000 infections.
Adding to the good news, City government officials said that the occupancy of beds in intensive care units (ICUs) had fallen to 48 percent, with less patients now receiving urgent care. General bed occupancy (i.e. non-critical care) has also decreased to 35 percent.
The news offers hope that the initial peak of the virus may have passed in the nation’s capital, with the focus of the pandemic now on several of Argentina’s inland provinces which are reporting increases in cases. Two weeks ago, the City Health Ministry was recording between 1,100 and 1,300 cases a day, according to official data.
On the situation of the pandemic by Covid-19, Quirós assured that "From September 1 to today we have had a stabilisation and a slow but sustained decline week by week," said City Health Minister Fernán Quiros.
As of Monday morning, Buenos Aires City had reported 123,717 infections since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. There have been 3,399 fatalities, with 65 deaths recorded since Sunday morning.
Speaking at a press conference, Quiros warned that the battle was not over, pointing out that the death rate from Covid-19 stood at 2.7 percent in the capital, compared to 2.3 percent in the rest of the country. He said he expected the rate to remain higher “for a while,” saying it could even go higher.
Quiros also commented on last Friday’s news that officials in Buenos Aires Province had added close to 3,500 more fatalities to its overall toll after a change in its data collection practices.
Such delays in reporting “are natural in this type of pandemic," said the minister, a doctor who serves in the opposition Juntos por el Cambio administration led by Mayor Horacio Rodríguez Larreta.
Quiros praised the provincial authorities for finding “a way to identify what is this delay and what [numbers] are missing."
"What they have found is a magnitude in the delay greater than the average and they have looked for a methodology to see where that delay is," said Quirós, who said it had been “very well done.
"It means that they have found a way to identify the gaps, but that does not mean a change in methodology, because once the gaps are identified, you have to sit down with the SISA [central database] and upload the data again," he said.