The Greek government will requisition the services of private sector doctors from certain specialties in Attica to help fight a renewed surge in coronavirus infections if not enough health workers come forward voluntarily, Health Minister Thanos Plevris said on Friday.
“In order to strengthen the hospitals, people [doctors] are leaving Athens, which is still not under pressure, to help in other regions, but we have also given incentives to private doctors with an amendment,” the minister said during a visit to the city of Larissa in central Greece where the viral load is high.
“I want to be clear on that. If private doctors do not respond to the incentives, we will be forced to issue a requisition order.”
Plevris dismissed again the possibility of ordering local of general lockdowns to halt the spread of the virus in the country, noting that any restrictions will have the same philosophy that has been followed thus far, limiting only the activities for the unvaccinated.
He also renewed his call on citizens to get vaccinated, saying that in regions will higher vaccination rates, hospitalisations are far lower.
Greece has been experiencing a new wave of the pandemic following a relaxation of health restrictions in recent months, with thousands of daily infections breaking all-time records, as well as increasing numbers of patients hospitalized in intensive care units.
The Health Ministry issued a requisition order in March this year, while the country was in the grip of the third wave of the pandemic.