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Stricter measures for unvaccinated as of Monday

Stricter measures for unvaccinated as of Monday

The new version of the COVID-19 automaton, approved by the Government on Thursday, will tighten up measures chiefly for unvaccinated individuals as of Monday (November 22).
According to the Health Ministry, the COVID-automaton will be adjusted based on the development of the epidemic situation in upcoming weeks. The automat has introduced a new mode - OP - which means fully vaccinated and those who have overcome COVID-19. The document brings a "local lockdown for the unvaccinated".

No restrictions apply to employees entering their workplaces in green and orange districts. The OTP mode (vaccinated, tested negative or recovered from COVID-19) should be followed in red, dark red and black districts. The opening hours of non-essential shops in dark red and black districts should also be limited from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. Mass events can be organised in the OP mode for 200 people in red districts, for 100 people in dark-red districts and for 50 people in black districts. No limitations apply to mass events organised in green and orange districts in the OP mode. A maximum of six people can visit events held in the OTP mode in red, dark-red and black districts. Organising of mass events in the basic mode in red, dark-red and black districts is banned. 

Shopping malls should be opened in the OP mode regardless of the colour of the respective district. They can only be opened in the OTP or basic modes in green and orange districts. Wearing a face mask is mandatory in indoor premises in green and orange districts and this duty also applies to mass events held outdoors. Wearing a respirator is mandatory in red, dark-red and black districts in indoor premises and a face mask at mass events held outdoors. The vaccinated and those who overcame COVID-19 within the last 180 days are to be treated equally.
 
Prime Minister Eduard Heger called on the unvaccinated to seek their jabs without delay and announced that vaccination centres are to be reinforced with more personnel. Heger is convinced that vaccination is the only way out of the pandemic. He urged the Slovaks to get vaccinated. "The fact that COVID-19 exists is not a matter of opinion, but hard facts," he stated. The hospitals are operating under enormous pressure, with both lung ventilation equipment and emergency unit beds lacking. As Prime Minister explained, the problem in hospitals has gone so far that there is a risk that medical care will not be provided to both COVID patients and white medicine patients, whose planned surgeries are being postponed.
      
The Government has approved illogical measures, thinks opposition Smer-SD chair Robert Fico. As he claimed, vaccinated people might spread COVID-19 as well, whereas people who test negatively for COVID-19 are safe to be around. In Fico's view, persons who are vaccinated, overcame COVID-19 or were tested for it negatively must be treated equally under the law. "Any other decision is segregationist and unconstitutional," he averred, adding that Smer-SD will challenge the measures in the Constitutional Court. The Smer-SD chair also criticised the Government for not taking care of the infected. He averred that persons diagnosed with the disease must instantly receive treatment and consultations, which he thinks might prevent hospitalisations.
      
Health Minister Vladimir Lengvarsky (OLaNO nominee) asked the public to show understanding and comply with, as well as enforce, the stricter epidemiological measures. "The current epidemiological situation jeopardises the entire health system and the provision of health care, not just to COVID-19 patients but all others," warned Lengvarsky after a session of the Government on Thursday. The minister conceded that the situation is becoming critical and the more stringent measures must apply also for those who have been responsible and had themselves vaccinated. "We hope that they understand that, hope that we'll all understand that and comply with the measures," he claimed. Lengvarsky wants the people to demand compliance also from those around them. "If you are at a restaurant where they don't check your COVID passes, demand to be checked and ask to be in a safe environment. So that we make sure there will be no need to introduce even sterner measures further down the road," he added.

Source: TASR

Martina Šimkovičová; Foto: TASR

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