Ljubljana related

14 Apr 2022, 07:50 AM

STA, 13 April 2022 - Masks will no longer be mandatory in public spaces as of Thursday under a government decision that keeps the mask mandate only in hospital and care facilities. Mask use is still recommended, especially for the elderly and those with compromised immune systems.

The government advisory group for Covid-19 initially proposed that the mask mandate be lifted once the total number of Covid patients in intensive care units drops below 35 for seven consecutive days, which trends suggest would have happened in about a week.

The government has however decided to speed things along given that Covid has been in retreat for some time. ICU cases have been below 35 for two days now.

The mask mandate was the only major restriction still in place, but even that has already been loosened since it was waived for schools in early March.

The mask mandate was first introduced in March 2020 and save for a brief intermission in June the same year the restriction has been in place to varying degrees since then.

At one points masks were mandatory outdoor as well, a measure that proved hugely unpopular.

Infectious diseases specialist Bojana Beović and Milan Krek, the head of the National Institute of Public Health, said today masks have been one of the key public health measures during the pandemic.

Without masks the figures would have been far worse, especially before vaccines were available in sufficient quantities, Krek stressed.

29 Mar 2022, 12:02 PM

STA, 29 March 2022 - Slovenia recorded 4,412 new coronavirus cases on Monday, over a tenth fewer than the figure reported the same day a week ago as the downward trend continued for the fifth day running. Just one patient with Covid-19 died, Health Ministry has reported.

A total of 186 patients were still treated for Covid-19 at hospitals this morning, two more than yesterday. The figure includes 37 in intensive care, the same figure as reported yesterday.

The National Institute of Public Health estimates there are now just below 39,000 actively infected people in the country, roughly 260 fewer than the previous day but still almost 4,000 more than estimate a week ago.

The 7-day average of new daily cases dropped to 2,710, down 77 from the previous day and down 95 compared to the figure reported a week ago.

The 14-day notification rate per 100,000 people is now at 1,844, up by 11 from a day ago and up by 187 week-on-week.

Monday's cases were picked up from 2,018 PCR tests and 17,966 rapid antigen tests.

All the latest data on COVID and Slovenia

15 Mar 2022, 12:39 PM

STA, 14 March 2022 - Administrative units (upravne enote) will return to business as usual after the government on Monday revoked a decree that severely restricted in-person operations by requiring that customers schedule appointments for services such as issuance of documents.

"Clients will be able to submit applications without having to schedule appointments, although the option of scheduling will remain," the Government Communications Office said.

Access to administrative units has been severely restricted for much of the pandemic, leading to long waiting times.

With most other coronavirus restrictions now lifted or relaxed, there have been complaints in recent weeks about the continued inaccessibility of administrative services.

The decree will enter into effect a day after it is published in the Official Gazette, presumably on Tuesday.

04 Mar 2022, 11:45 AM

STA, 3 March 2022 - Teenagers aged 12 to 18 can now get a coronavirus booster shot after this change to vaccination has been recommended by the task force on immunisation at the National Institute of Public Health. They will get the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine booster, the task force's head Bojana Beović told the STA on Thursday.

The immunisation group recommends booster for the children aged 12 to 18 who suffer from diseases that could worsen their Covid-19 should they fall ill with it.

"However, healthy youth can also get vaccinated with a booster shot," stressed Beović.

The immunisation group followed the recommendation of the European Medicines Agency's (EMA) human medicines committee from 24 February.

The committee said the available evidence was sufficient to conclude that the immune response to a booster dose in adolescents would be at least equal to that in adults.

A booster shot is recommended three months after the basic two-dose vaccination.

Those who have recovered from Covid but have not been vaccinated are meanwhile recommended to receive a booster three to six months after recovering from the disease.

EMA last week also approved the Moderna vaccine for children over 6, which has so far been approved only for kids over 12, but the Slovenian immunisation task force has not yet discussed this change.

03 Mar 2022, 14:58 PM

STA, 3 March 2022 - Face masks will no longer be obligatory in schools and other educational institutions as of Monday under the latest relaxation of restrictions that the government confirmed on Thursday. This applies to both teachers and students, Health Minister Janez Poklukar said.

Other restrictions remain in place for now, including the mask mandate for indoor public spaces.

Slovenian health authorities will start issuing Covid certificates for those who had a positive rapid antigen test whose results were not confirmed with a PCR test.

According to Poklukar, this is in line with the latest EU guidance.

Slovenia has phased out the Covid pass in most settings, with only health institutions, care homes and prisons now requiring a Covid pass for visitors.

27 Feb 2022, 08:24 AM

STA, 26 February 2022 - Slovenia confirmed 1,784 new coronavirus infections on Friday in what is the second day in a row that the figure dropped below 2,000 for the first time since early January. The total of active cases has fallen below 50,000.

Hospitalisations kept decreasing with government data showing 418 patients were treated for Covid as their main condition in hospitals this morning, down by nearly 30 on the day before. A total of 93 needed intensive care, down by seven.

The total of patients in hospitals who are infected with Covid, including those who have contracted the virus but are treated for other conditions, dropped by 73 to 622. Another 13 people with Covid died.

The 14-day incidence per 100,000 people and the seven-day average of new cases continued to steadily decrease - the former dropped by 265 to 2,230 and the latter by 277 to 2,144, shows data by the National Institute of Public Health.

The number of currently active cases decreased by some 5,500 to 47,062.

All the latest data on covid and Slovenia

24 Feb 2022, 08:15 AM

STA, 23 February 2022 - The Kranj Local Court has issued convictions for five men involved in a Covid-19 vaccination fraud where one of them got vaccinated on behalf of the other four. The verdicts are not yet final, the daily Delo reported on Tuesday. One of the defendants was given a sentence of ten months in prison, while the other four were fined.

In addition to the prison sentence for the man who had received jabs for the other four, the court imposed a fine of EUR 2,550 on two and a fine of EUR 1,360 on the remaining two.

The Kranj Health Centre told Delo that it was tragic that a man whose plight had been exploited by others was sentenced to imprisonment, whereas the others received only a fine.

Last December, the police charged the five men from the Gorenjska region and Ljubljana area for vaccination fraud. The man who took the shots for the others to get the Covid pass received seven doses of a coronavirus vaccine, together with the two doses for himself, and was caught attempting to get the eight shot.

Since the man received a small payment for this, the police believe that the four men exploited his plight and personal circumstances to their own advantage and induced him to commit the offence despite the possible consequences to his health.

Radio Slovenija reported at the time that the man who had got the jabs for other people was allegedly a drug addict.

Under the law, taking jabs in somebody else's name or presenting fake Covid certificates carries a sentence of up to three years in prison.

22 Feb 2022, 07:53 AM

STA, 21 February 2022 - Virtually all Covid-19 restrictions are being lifted in Slovenia on Monday except for the wearing of masks and hand sanitising indoors. Proof of recovery, vaccination or negative test (PCT) will only be required in hospitals, care homes and prisons.

Under the decisions taken by the government on Saturday, there will no longer be a cap on gatherings or the number of people allowed inside shops, hospitality and other services establishments.

Meanwhile, cultural institutions await more detailed instructions by the government to ascertain whether a distance of 1.5 meters will still have to be heeded at cultural events.

Also scrapped are restrictions on the opening hours of hospitality establishments, and night clubs can reopen. Unseated guests will still be required to wear face masks indoors and hand sanitising remains in force like in other activities subject to easing.

At outdoor public events, masks are recommended when a distance of 1.5 meters cannot be maintained.

The Covid pass or PCT requirement remains mandatory for staff and service users at hospitals and those undergoing certain procedures such as endoscopy or oral surgery, but it is not mandatory at health centres. It also remains in place at social care institutions, prisons and other correctional facilities, except for those aged up to 15.

Students will no longer need to self test at schools, but face masks remain obligatory under the same conditions as so far.

Free self-tests and rapid antigen tests are no longer available, except in certain cases. The government will pay for the costs of tests in activities where testing is still compulsory.

Rapid antigen testing remains free of charge for those who get a positive self-test result, those with Covid-19 symptoms and those who would like to end self-isolation early after a seven-day period.

Since Saturday, contacts of infected persons are no longer required to quarantine, but those who test positive still need to self-isolate.

The infected are also urged to notify those with whom they have been in close contact within 48 hours before testing positive of the risk of infection.

Their contacts are advised to take a test or self-test 7 days after the last risk contact and to avoid unnecessary contacts with other people for 14 days since being in contact with the infected person.

Since Saturday, the Covid pass is no longer required to enter Slovenia.

The near universal PCT requirement has been in force since 15 September last year with further restrictions such as the curfew on bars and restaurants imposed in early November.

20 Feb 2022, 10:13 AM

STA, 20 February 2022 - Slovenia will lift Covid restrictions on shops, services and other businesses on Monday, including restrictions on opening hours of hospitality establishments and the ban on night clubs, under a decision taken by the government on Saturday.

The decision was taken as the government gave its go ahead to scrap the Covid pass mandate for all activities except for healthcare institutions, care homes and prisons from Monday. The cap on the number of customers in services is also being lifted.

Under restrictions imposed in early November last year, bars, cafes and restaurants have so far been allowed to serve customers at tables between 5am and 10pm provided they had a valid Covid pass. Night clubs have been closed.

In announcing the easing of measures on businesses, Economy Minister Zdravko Počivalšek said the government opted for a balanced approach to keep protecting the health of the most-at-risk groups while at the same time allowing life to resume as normal as possible and business to function efficiently.

"We have thus met the calls from the economy as far as the medical experts have allowed," said the minister, calling for everyone to continue to act responsibly. "The economy can function efficiently and intensively only if the employees are healthy," he added.

19 Feb 2022, 18:09 PM

STA, 19 February 2022 - Covid pass will no longer be required in Slovenia as of Monday, except in healthcare and social care institutions, and in prisons, Health Minister Janez Poklukar told the press after today's correspondence session of the government. Students at schools will no longer need to self test either.

In line with the latest government decisions, free self-tests and rapid antigen tests will thus no longer be available. The state will only cover for the costs of tests in activities where testing will still be required.

Students will no longer need to self test at schools, but face masks remain obligatory under the same conditions as so far.

Poklukar urged the citizens to continue to act responsibly despite easing of the measures.

This comes after the government last night decided to abolish the quarantine requirement after high-risk contact with an infected person, and the Covid pass for entry to Slovenia, effective today.

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