Government Greenlights COVID Automaton

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Health Minister Marek Krajci (stock photo by TASR)

Bratislava, December 16 (TASR) – The Government on Wednesday approved the so-called COVID automaton, also known as the Alert System, that will monitor the situation regarding the epidemic in the country and dictate the adoption of anti-virus measures.
The automaton determines key criteria based on various responses that should prevent the epidemic from getting worse, namely the number of infected cases, the increase in infected cases and dynamics related to growth.

“The epidemiological situation will be managed at the level of regions if basic nationwide criteria are met. Depending on whether these nationwide limits are or aren’t exceeded, measures will be adopted either across the board or individually in regions,” explained the ministry.

The key indicators that will trigger the implementation of across-the-board measures will be the seven-day average of new infection cases, the number of patients in hospital across the country and the effective reproduction number Rt (R at time t).

A first-degree alert applying to the whole country will be put in place when the seven-day average exceeds 1,000 new cases. A second-degree alert will occur when the average stands at 1,500-3,000, while a third degree alert will be triggered at 3,000-5,000 and a fourth-degree one will be issued when the average exceeds 5,000 new cases.
As for the number of patients in hospital, alerts will be triggered as follows: 1st degree – more than 1,500 patients, 2nd degree – between 2,000 and 2,500 patients, 3rd and 4th degree – more than 2,500 patients.

The automaton has a total of seven stages ranging from green to black. The country is currently in the worst, black phase. Across-the-board measures will be implemented while there are at least 1,500 people in hospital, the effective reproduction number of the virus exceeds 1.1 and the seven-day average of new infection cases exceeds 1,000.