[WATCH] 97-year-old is Malta's seventh victim of COVID-19, one new case overnight

The health authorities are having ongoing talks with education over reopening of summer schools and child care centres, with Charmaine Gauci warning that the situation will have to be different from before

A 97-year-old man who was diagnosed with COVID-19 has died overnight.

In a statement, the government said the man had a number of health issues, and was being cared for at Karen Grech hospital.

The man began showing symptoms on 16 May and tested positive for COVID-19 on 17 May.

The Health Ministry, while offering condolences to the relatives of the senior, calls on the people to follow the appeals of the Department of Health to protect the most vulnerable in our society.

In a briefing on Wednesday, Public Health Superintendent Charmaine Gauci said one new case was registered overnight and six recoveries. On Tuesday, Malta had recorded no new cases of COVID-19 overnight.

The positive case involves a 71-year-old man who was a patient at Mount Carmel Hospital. He was being kept in the admissions ward pending a 14-day quarantine period before being transferred into another ward.

Gauci said contact tracing was taking place among fellow patients and staff members.

'Stable' situation

She said there were 114 active cases, of which 86 are being treated at home.

The continuous analysis of the transition period showed that the number of cases since the lifting of restrictions indicated "a stable" situation, she added.

Gauci again appealed for people to respect the mitigation measures accompanying the lifting of restrictions. On the football celebrations witnessed over the past few days, Gauci reiterated the country cannot afford to have mass gatherings.

She again advised those who celebrated in Floriana and other localities to phone the 111 helpline to get tested as from tomorrow.

Skola Sajf and child care centres

Asked about the prospect of summer schools and child care centres reopening in the coming weeks, Gauci said there were ongoing talks with the education authorities on the risk criteria and mitigation measures to safeguard children, carers and educators.

"It is important to keep in mind that the situation will be different from before and one such measure will definitely be the presence of fewer children in any one group, at any one go," she said, adding all hygiene measures such as regular washing of hands and social distancing should be respected.

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