SANTIAGO, Jan. 13 (Xinhua) -- Chile's Health Ministry said Thursday it registered more than 7,000 COVID-19 cases in 24 hours, after detecting 7,291 infections in one day, the highest figure in seven months.
The new cases pushed the country's total caseload to 1,849,465, the ministry said.
In the same day, 41 more patients died of causes related to the disease, bringing the pandemic death toll to 39,331.
The COVID-19 positivity rate for the past day was 6.9 percent nationwide and 7.39 percent in the Santiago Metropolitan Region, the ministry said, adding none of Chile's 16 regions had a positivity rate below 2 percent.
Chile averaged 2,500 daily COVID-19 infections in December, but the spread of the Omicron variant of coronavirus this month has pushed the average to 5,000 cases per day.
Meanwhile, Chile began applying a second booster dose of the vaccine against COVID-19 in January, aiming to increase the population's protection against Omicron amid the tourism summer season in the Southern Hemisphere. ■