Covid task force to recommend two scenarios, including lockdown

Ljubljana, 2 November - A group of experts advising the government on Covid-19 will propose two scenarios to the government to address the rapidly deteriorating epidemiological situation in Slovenia, including a 10-day lockdown, the STA has learnt from a well-placed yet unofficial source.

Face masks.
Photo: Nadja Podobnik/STA
File photo

Should the government not opt for the lockdown, the group proposes other restrictions - strict control of Covid passes, closure of hospitality establishments at 11pm, sports events without spectators, work from home for the public sector, and capping public assembly to a maximum 10 people who must meet the convalescent-vaccinated-tested (PCT) rule.

Should these measures not produce an improvement in the epidemiological situation in a week, the task force will still propose a full lockdown of ten days, while it would also like to increase availability of free-of-charge testing.

The task force met to discuss the measures and agreed on them yesterday. Its head Mateja Logar, a doctor at UKC Ljubljana's Infectious Diseases Clinic, told the STA on Tuesday that the group would meet the government today.

Logar told the STA after the meeting with government representatives that the government had been proposed to introduce stricter anti-epidemic measures, and not a 10-day lockdown.

She said that it had been indeed written in the draft minutes from Monday's session of the advisory task force that a 10-day full lockdown was to be proposed, adding that it was a substantive error in the minutes that had not been confirmed yet.

The minutes were corrected today and then sent to the Health Ministry, Logar added.

According to unofficial information obtained by the STA, the government was not inclined to a lockdown at today's meeting, and it insted adopted a decision to introduce stricter anti-epidemic measures.

Robert Carotta, coordinator for Covid beds at hospitals, told the STA that hospital leaderships are meeting the health minister today as hospitalisations are rising.

Unofficial information obtained by the STA indicates that the current number of available Covid beds is fully occupied or that the capacities have been even exceeded.

According to the government, 634 Covid patients are in hospital, up 31 on yesterday, of whom 158 are in intensive care.

Health Ministry State Secretary Franc VindiĊĦar announced last week that "rigorous measures will have to be taken" once 160-180 Covid beds in intensive care are full.

The government first introduced lockdown for several months when the epidemic broke out in March 2020, and again approximately a year ago, including for schools, while also opting for a much shorter lockdown around last Easter holidays.

© STA, 2021