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Coronavirus: Ioannou says relaxations will lead to rise in cases but expects situation to be manageable

Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou

Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou said they expected a rise in coronavirus cases with the lifting of restrictions but expected the situation to be manageable

“Of course, we are concerned and that is why we keep stressing that despite the relaxations there must not be complacency; it is necessary to observe social distancing and personal hygiene measures,” he told a news conference.

Ioannou said if the rules were observed there would be a rise in cases but it would be manageable.

“Certainly we are worried by the fact that in other countries were measures were relaxed, like Germany for example, there was a rise in cases, and not just that, but a rise of the index (R0 basic reproduction number) that sets the epidemiological data, the virus’ rate of transmission, which as you know is one to one,” Ioannou said.

“In Germany it started with 0.7 and now it’s at one and that is why there is some concern. There is concern in our case too and that is why we keep stressing the need to faithfully observe social distancing and personal hygiene.”

Ioannou said lifting restrictions from Monday entailed many risks and would not be an easy feat.

The basic measures that businesses should enforce when they open on Monday should be 8sqm per worker and two metres between them.

The business must provide antiseptic at the door and have a sign outside with the shop’s capacity.

There must also be immediate access to masks, thermometers, and so on and the shops and surfaces must be cleaned daily.

The use of a mask is mandatory for workers who come to contact with the public while people are advised to use one when in crowded closes spaces and public transport.

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