Coronavirus & Slovenia: Govt Announces New Restrictions, Recommendations, Closures

By , 13 Mar 2020, 16:03 PM Lifestyle
Coronavirus & Slovenia: Govt Announces New Restrictions, Recommendations, Closures Screenshot of the national press conference broadcast

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At 14:00 the number of people in Slovenian who tested positive for COVID-19 was 141, and 4,346 tests have been performed. The National Institute of Public Health director Nina Pirnat explained that the regional distribution of cases was not yet available, but that the rising numbers are pointing towards Ljubljana.

She also stated that the pandemic has now entered the second phase in which the main goal is to make it possible for the health system to offer health care to every patient who is going to need it. Measures that are preventing social contacts among citizens have therefore been put in place in order to slow down the spread of the disease.  

Pirnat also called on parents to make sure their children don't meet outside in bars and coffeeshops, now that the schools have been shut down, and that people should refrain from visiting nursing homes and thereby prevent the disease from entering the more vulnerable individuals inside. It is important that physical distance among people is maintained while outdoors as well.

Simona Repar Bornšek, state secretary at the Ministry of Health, explained that they were aware of cases of sick people in their homes, who are almost certainly infected but will not be tested as it doesn’t seem to be necessary. She mentioned the current system of taking swabs is overloaded and that new testing measures will be introduced soon.

Repar Bornšek also announced new measures within the health system, which will be introduced on Monday: all specialist examinations, surgeries, rehabilitations and other non-urgent health procedures will be cancelled except for cancer patients and pregnant women. Dentistry is cancelled by Monday as well, while seven emergency points for urgent cases will be introduced, although the locations were not announced.

She added that all government services are being shut down for two weeks in an attempt to avoid reaching a maximum load on the health system at once.

As for the question of who will be looking after younger school children whose schools shut on Monday, the state secretary at the Ministry of Education Martina Vuk explained that a decree has been signed which provides day care only for children of parents who are obligated to provide support in critical infrastructure or national  security sectors. Such care will be provided to children in fifth grade and younger.

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