Slovak Shopping Centres to Close due to Coronavirus over Weekends

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(Stock photo by TASR)

Bratislava, March 12 (TASR) – Operations of shopping centres will be restricted over coronavirus as of Friday, while it will be only possible to buy food, drugs and drugstore goods there over weekends, with small shops and restaurants staying open, however, announced Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini (Smer-SD) after a meeting of the central crisis team on Thursday.


Pellegrini said that the authorities will review the presence of people at shopping centres on Monday, and if it’s found out that “the people haven’t observed the recommendation of minimising visits to these centres, we’ll consider imposing restrictions also on work days,” said Interior Minister Denisa Sakova (Smer-SD).

According to Pellegrini, the afore-mentioned restrictions have come in response to an obvious lack of responsibility by many members of the public.

“We’ve been horrified to see that the interruption of education at schools, which has been introduced as a preventive measure to slow down the spread of infection, has obviously been understood by many as a vacation. Many parents have happily set out with their children to ski resorts in Jasna and the Tatra Mountains, while others, undisturbed, go to aquaparks,” said Pellegrini.

Meanwhile, the State Material Reserves Administration has secured respirators of the fourth generation FFP4 to be distributed among infectology clinics.

“We’ve already acquired thousands of single-use face masks – as of tomorrow millions of pieces – to be distributed to doctor’s offices, pharmacies and public offices,” said Pellegrini.
Slovak hospitals at the moment have around 1,000 medical ventilators, with the state now attempting to increase their number by 10 percent.

Pellegrini announced that the Slovak Government is in touch with the governments of other countries, for example, China and Russia, and it’s got positive feedback concerning possible provision of material assistance to Slovakia.