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January 20, 2022

President Iohannis: No need to return the country to the state of emergency; weddings, baptisms, celebrations to be restricted

President Klaus Iohannis said on Friday that he did not want a return to the state of emergency and called for the restriction of events in which many people participate.

“We have discussed these issues, because the boogieman with the state of emergency has been carried around by a lot of people. And I tell you once again: I do not intend a return to the state of emergency. There are less harsh measures that have perhaps even better effects. The best prevention is the mask, keeping distance, hygiene. We don’t need to lock down the whole country to get a restraining effect. We don’t need a state of emergency to wear a mask. At this stage, I don’t intend to declare again the state of emergency, but I’m an advocate for preventive measures such as masks, and distancing,” said Iohannis after visiting the National Institute of Public Health (INSP) together with Health Minister Nelu Tataru.

He argued that events such as weddings, baptisms, celebrations should be restricted.

“I think that the events where a lot of people congregate and probably control becomes harder will have to be restricted. Unfortunately, we have seen too many meetings that have a positive substratum, such as weddings, baptisms, celebrations, where restrictions have not been followed and it is possible that such meetings be restricted,” the head of state showed.

Iohannis pointed out that the government is taking all measures not to end up in critical situations. He added that “gung-ho” measures to repurpose some hospitals to increase the number of intensive care beds should be avoided.

“We are always spreading data about the system as well. For example, there are currently 600 or so people in intensive care, but we have over 1,000 beds exclusively for COVID patients, so we are not at all limited. On the other hand, we have asked the government to look for solutions to increase the number of intensive care beds and beds for patients who are hospitalised for a condition that is not very serious, but for a condition that requires hospitalisation. (…) Concrete, innovative solutions are needed; where the intensive care units can be expanded, where there are specialists, that will be done, the number of beds will likely increase. Whether certain hospitals will be transformed or not is a decision to be made by the Ministry of Health, but I am not a supporter of gung-ho measures. Very careful analysis is needed of where an increase in the number of intensive care beds is possible and do it. I do not want to get back to when the intensive care beds were installed but there was no specialist staff and then the whole effort was practically in vain. Sensible measures must be taken where there are specialists, doctors, human resources. The material resource, as a rule, is easiest to provide, but human resources have to be managed carefully,” said Iohannis.

Iohannis expressed his gratitude and admiration for the doctors and medical staff who are body and soul dedicated to patients during this difficult time.

No need to postpone parliamentary elections

President Klaus Iohannis said on Friday that the discussion he had at the National Institute of Public Health (INSP) did not show the need to postpone this year’s general election.

“It is not possible to set a certain number of cases. If the National Institute tells us that, from this moment, it is not possible to take one public action or another, we will take the necessary measures, but today’s discussion did not show the need to postpone the election,” said Iohannis, according to Agerpres.

HealthMin  Tataru: 209 patients infected with novel coronavirus – with invasive intubation

Health Minister Nelu Tataru declared on Friday that 209 patients infected with the novel coronavirus are intubated and mechanically ventilated.

“In the COVID support hospitals we have 1,050 fully equipped intensive care beds, at the moment there are 613 occupied beds, of which we have 209 people on the ventilator, with invasive intubation. We are at the moment of re-evaluating each case separately. Our indications were to re-assess each patient for intensive therapies. There are also those intermediate therapy beds in which we specify that those patients who are not on assisted ventilation and are on an oxygen support, depending on the level of respiratory failure can benefit from these intermediate therapy beds. The other beds, which are fully equipped with ventilators, remaining for those who need to be intubated. The evaluation of each patient is done by the attending physician. The evaluation of each intensive care unit depends on the existing outbreaks in that locality or in the surrounding counties,” said Tataru, after a visit to the National Institute of Public Health.

The minister said he would have a meeting on Monday with family doctors to discuss the possibility of them participating in the monitoring of those in isolation, but also in epidemiological investigations.

“We will have a discussion on Monday with the family doctors. We also found solutions with the Health Insurance House in order to be able to participate both for the monitoring of those in isolation and for the epidemiological investigations,” Tataru said.

Asked if family doctors could be paid extra, Tataru replied: “Yes. There is this alternative as well. We will have discussions on Monday. The Insurance House is preparing an evaluation for Monday.”

Tataru on seroprevalence study: immunization percentage – 4.6%

Health Minister Nelu Tataru said on Friday that, so far, following the processing of 11,000 tests in the seroprevalence study, the percentage of immunization to the novel coronavirus is 4.6%.

“Seroprevalence study – 4.6% – the last percentage for going through the disease. 17,000 serums were collected. Of these, 11,000 have been processed. So far the percentage of immunization is 4.6%,” said Tataru.

Asked if he is considering a decision to amend the ministerial order so that the asymptomatic do not end up in hospital and be under the supervision of the family doctor, the health minister replied: “We are considering such a decision. (…) We have the evaluation of the asymptomatic or relatively asymptomatic for up to 48 hours. He/she does not have to be hospitalized, but do that evaluation, then, with an opinion from the Public Health Directorate and the decision of the attending physician who evaluated him/her to go in isolation. Any patient must be evaluated, because this disease has an unpredictable evolution,” said Tataru.

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