The Maldives on Saturday confirmed 323 new cases of Covid-19 along with 518 additional recoveries.

According to the latest figures released by the Health Protection Agency (HPA), a total of 2,179 samples were tested for the virus between 6 p.m. Friday and 6 p.m. Saturday, of which 295 were collected across the capital.

The new cases confirmed as of sunset on Saturday include 20 detected in the Greater Male region, 269 in residential islands outside the capital region and 21 in operational stations as well.

The location of the 13 cases confirmed on Saturday remains to be determined.

With this development, active cases of Covid-19 across the Maldives fell to 14,571 from 14,766 the previous day.

The public health authority then revealed that the number of Covid-19 cases in the Maldives had risen to 172,270.

Additionally, the total number of confirmed recoveries in the archipelago nation had risen to 157,389 by the end of Saturday.

Three patients were discharged from hospital during the reporting period, with hospital admissions currently standing at eight.

Although the Maldives has reported high numbers since the New Year, the number of cases has declined in recent days. Thus, 3,122 new cases were confirmed nationwide in the past week.

The Maldives reported its first Covid-19 related death in April 2020. The total number of confirmed deaths in the island nation stands at 297.

The country has been in a state of health emergency for almost two years now, since March 12, 2020. The last extension is due to expire on March 30.

Although the Maldives kept the number of Covid-19 cases at low daily figures in the capital region towards the end of 2021, cases in the capital had increased at the start of the year. For this reason, HPA has reinforced security measures in the Greater Male region. However, the number of cases has decreased in recent days.

On February 22, HPA dissolved the regulation mandating PCR tests for those traveling to the islands from the capital, changing the guidelines published on January 9.

As such, HPA revealed that the changes include the dissolution of the regulation which required valid PCR test results 72 hours prior, when traveling to residential islands from the capital Male.

In addition, HPA revealed that the limit on the number of people allowed to participate in rallies and attend events as well as ceremonies in the capital has been revoked.

While HPA also banned spectators from attending sporting events in the capital due to an alarming spike in Covid-19 infections, it has since been revoked.

However, the public has been asked to continue to organize events and other similar activities in accordance with the recommendations and instructions in place for the safety of people.

PCR tests were made compulsory for travelers from the capital to the atolls in January, when the Maldives was plunged into a growing virus outbreak.

It has seen queues at PCR test centers overcrowded and congested with several people standing in line for hours to get their tests done.