SANTIAGO, Oct. 31 (Xinhua) -- Elective surgeries have resumed in Chile as cases of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) have decreased in the country, the Health Ministry's undersecretary of assistance networks, Arturo Zuniga, said Saturday.
At a press conference, the official stated that in some areas, surgeons are already performing a greater number of surgeries than those performed during the same period of last year.
But he said that "it is totally understandable that citizens are afraid of going to the clinics, to hospitals, so as not to get coronavirus."
He urged citizens to go to health centers when necessary, saying that "hospitals and clinics have taken biosecurity measures to minimize the possibility of contagion and it is important that people return for their checkups and all the medical care they need to maintain their health."
The Ministry of Health reported on Saturday another 49 deaths and 1,686 new cases of COVID-19 in the last 24 hours.
These new figures brought the total number of confirmed cases in the country to 510,256 and the death toll from the disease to 14,207.