Colombia extends COVID-19 Health Emergency to April 30.

EFE/Mauricio Dueñas

With the start of the fourth wave of COVID-19 infections, driven by the Omicron variant, and that began a surge in new daily cases at the end of December, 2021, active cases stood near 10,000. By the end of this weekend, should the number of daily patient recoveries stay above 2,000, the country will once again reach a number close to 10,000 active cases.

As of Thursday, active cases of coronavirus stood at 15,938 including the day’s additional 2,249 cases.

After two months since the Omicron was first detected in the country and became the 100% dominant variant, the Ministry of Health released a statement on Friday morning confirming that the “epidemiological situation maintains a favorable trend (…) with the reduction in the number of per-day cases, occupancy of hospital beds and ICUs, as well as number of deceased persons.” On Thursday, the Ministry reported 57 fatalities from the disease and lowest figure since the same number of deaths was confirmed on December 10, 2021.

Despite the sharp decline in infections and easing of face mask rules for persons outdoors, the national government has extended the Health Emergency due to end on February 28 to April 30. The national government based its decision on the importance of “strong co-responsibility of individuals with self-care measures, communities and government.”

According to the Ministry of Health’s director of epidemiology and demographics Julián Fernández, Colombia “has reversed the trend to return to the configuration of December 2, 2021, when for every patient who was admitted in a ICU with COVID-19, five others were admitted with different pathologies,” he said.

President Iván Duque enacted the National Health Emergency on March 12, 2020, less than a week after the first case of coronavirus was detected in Bogotá.