PM: Amendment Will Enable Sending of SMS to People Coming from ‘Red’ Countries

Prime Minister Igor Matovic (left) and Slovakia's Chief Hygienist Jan Mikas. (Stock photo by TASR)

Bratislava, July 9 (TASR) – The Government will discuss an amendment at a special session on Monday (July 13) that will allow sending to people coming from a ‘red’, dangerous country an SMS message, containing a notice of the obligation to contact the Public Health Office, Prime Minister Igor Matovic (OLaNO) said at a press conference on Thursday.
Disobedience should be punished with a high fine. The amendment will be submitted to Parliament in fast-tracked proceedings.

The premier pointed to the latest 53 people tested positive that this “isn’t a positive number”. Therefore, he decided to convene a consilium of experts, where he wanted to find out about the latest situation. He announced that a consilium of epidemiologists to discuss new recommendations related to the novel coronavirus will also meet on Monday. “The only weapon we have in our hands is the responsibility of all of us,” he said, adding that it helped Slovakia win the first wave. Matovic “firmly believes” that Slovakia will be able to prevent the second wave.

Slovakia’s Chief Hygienist Jan Mikas divided the cases in Slovakia into three categories. The first is a group of imported cases from abroad. Furthermore, there are close, especially family contacts of persons already tested positive; this group is the most common. Another category is the scattered cases that appear but according to him, they’re under epidemiological surveillance. Regarding the planned holidays, he noted that “it’s important for people to realise that they must protect themselves”.

In this context, Health Minister Marek Krajci (OLaNO) highlighted the quality work of epidemiologists. He also warned that patients should undergo a triage before entering the hospital. “It’s important that our hospitals don’t forget that the triage needs to be carried out,” he said, adding that thanks to this measure, a suspicious patient with a possible COVID-19 disease should not appear in the hospital. He also recommends that patients be tested for the novel coronavirus before surgery, according to him the test will be paid for from EU funds.