NEWS

More lockdowns on the horizon as numbers continue to rise

more-lockdowns-on-the-horizon-as-numbers-continue-to-rise

At least two more parts of Greece are close to a full lockdown similar to that which began in Attica Thursday, as data continue to show a four-digit rise in coronavirus infections.

The National Organization for Public Health (EODY) Thursday reported 1,327 new Covid-19 cases, with 676 of those being in the Greek capital, 129 in the northern port city of Thessaloniki and 94 in Achaia, western Greece. It also reported 22 new fatalities and 238 hospital admissions, which brought capacity at the country’s Covid wards to 48.5%.

The committee of health experts advising the government is due to meet on Friday to discuss whether to recommend tighter restrictions for Thessaloniki and Achaia. A stricter lockdown may also be imposed on the region of Rethymno in Crete.

The status of the Greek capital, meanwhile, went from orange to red on the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control’s map of coronavirus transmission, as Athens University professor of analytical chemistry Nikolaos Thomaidis warned there may be as many as 80,000 to 90,000 symptomatic or asymptomatic carriers of SARS-CoV-2 in the region, based on his team’s sewage analysis.

Thessaloniki is also on tenterhooks, though the possibility of a total lockdown was not discussed in so many words by Health Minister Vassilis Kikilias, who toured its public hospitals on Thursday.

Mayor Konstantinos Zervas was more outspoken about the situation in his city, urging the government to at least close schools, citing EODY data that showed that 8.5-11% of new cases in recent days concern children under the age of 12.