PANDEMIC

As expected, lockdowns are extended

As expected, lockdowns are extended

Striving to control the rising number of coronavirus infections and to relieve the national health system of mounting pressure, the government announced on Friday an extension until March 8 to the existing lockdown in Attica and other parts of the country.

Deputy Civil Protection Minister Nikos Hardalias announced that Attica, Achaia, Evia, Kalymnos, Arcadia and the municipality of Evosmos-Kordelio in Thessaloniki remain high-risk. As of Saturday, moreover, the regional units of Lefkada, Thesprotia, Syros, Samos, Iraklio in Crete, Corinth and the municipalities of Arta, Didymoteicho, Lokra and Amfilochia, have been designated as being in the red and under a hard lockdown until March 8.

Hardalias also highlighted the increasing viral burden in Piraeus and the western sector of Athens, as well as the municipalities of Larissa and Volos in central Greece.

At the same time, pressure remains relentless on Attica hospitals, as the occupancy rate at Covid intensive care units was 88% on Friday.

According to the data presented by Athens University Professor of Pediatric Infectious Diseases Vana Papaevangelou and Assistant Professor of Epidemiology Gikas Magiorkinis, there has been an increase in transmission over the last seven days, with a daily average of 1,500 new cases. This trend was recorded in 56 regional units.

“We’ve had many small fires, but it means we cannot put out the blaze,” Papaevangelou noted. 

A total of 1,790 new cases of Covid-19 were reported on Friday, as well as 29 deaths. Of the new cases, 790 were in Attica, with a significant burden recorded in Piraeus where 167 cases were identified. There were 150 infections in Thessaloniki, 122 in Achaia, 56 in Larissa, 54 in Fthiotida and 45 in Iraklio, Crete.

Moreover, 371 patients remained intubated. In total, the number of patients being treated for Covid-19 on Friday throughout the country was around 2,500.

In a related development, a total of more than 850,000 vaccinations had been administered by 5 p.m. Friday.

Referring to reports of people jumping the line to get their jabs, the general secretary of primary healthcare, Marios Themistokleous, assured that all incidents are investigated and where there is a violation, the prescribed sanctions are imposed.