At-home help from municipalities being bolstered


Citizens whose age or state of health make them particularly vulnerable to infection with the new coronavirus will be receiving help from their local authority to tackle the day-to-day challenges arising from measures to prevent the spread of the epidemic, according to an Interior Ministry decision published on Tuesday.

The measure is aimed mainly at helping elderly residents not to have to venture from home to go shopping or replenish their medical prescriptions.

In a memo, Interior Minister Takis Theodorikakos ordered that municipal employees who have been temporarily relieved from duties requiring constant contact with the general public be put into the service of local “help at home” programs, which cater mainly to elderly housebound residents who do not have a caretaker to look after their needs.

Under the emergency measure, local authorities will have to create a new record of citizens requiring assistance, including the indigent. These households will be assigned care workers who will ensure that they receive the medicines and household supplies they need, as well as ensuring access to basic sanitation and health services.

More employees will also be assigned to manning municipal authorities’ telephone centers and websites to process requests from citizens in need of assistance at home.

Local authorities responsible for areas that do not have access to such facilities are being required to set up a system ensuring that help is available even in the remotest parts of the country.