The state of alert in Romania has been extended by another 30 days due to the new coronavirus pandemic.
Romania will remain in a state of alert during the holidays period in the context of the new coronavirus pandemic. The decision by which the government extended the state of alert by another 30 days came into force on Monday. The state of alert that has been previously extended several times, was first instated in mid May after Romania had been in a state of emergency for 2 months, as of March 16.
Under the new government decision, restrictions previously proposed by the Committee for Emergency Situations have been maintained, including the ban on people’s movement after 11 p.m. without a solid reason. A new decision has been added to the previous ones, which refers to the organization and unfolding of activities of cable operators on ski slopes. Although ski slopes remain open, the authorities intend to avoid overcrowding. Also, the restaurants and hotels near ski pistes will operate under the already established conditions.
In another development, the number of new cases of COVID-19 continues to grow in Romania and new records of COVD-19 related deaths have been reported of late. Also the number of patients in ICUs has grown. The capital Bucharest reports the highest contamination rate and the authorities have warned that pressure is going to increase on the healthcare system in Bucharest and that they might need to continue transferring patients outside Bucharest, to cities where the pressure on the healthcare system is not that high.
To this end, the head of the Department for Emergency Situations, Secretary of State Raed Arafat, has announced that 500 individual oxygen generators will be distributed to medical units, which will thus be able to treat more COVID-19 patients with oxygen. Although the number of new coronavirus cases is growing in Bucharest by the day, the authorities are not considering quarantining the city, as they argue that the measures in force at the moment are enough.
There are several localities around Bucharest that have been quarantined though, as they have reported a contamination rate between 7% and 9 % per one thousand inhabitants. The restrictive measures have been extended in other localities across Romania, but in the Sibiu county (center), the authorities decided to lift the quarantine measures, as of Monday, in the city of Sibiu and another 7 surrounding localities, after the rate of infection at county level has dropped from more than 9% to 3.65% per one thousand inhabitants. Hospitals are no longer overcrowded, only half of their capacity for COVID-19 patients being used. Still, intensive care beds are all occupied by patients brought from other counties. (tr. L. Simion)