The situation with the coronavirus epidemic across the Czech Republic may be as serious as in the Cheb, Sokolov, and Trutnov districts in two to three weeks, Health Minister Jan Blatný told journalists on Wednesday.
The government has cordoned off the districts Cheb and Sokolov, west Bohemia, and Trutnov, east Bohemia, due to the rapid spread of the coronavirus.
Blatný said the more contagious UK variant of the virus was increasingly spreading in the western part of Bohemia.
The minister said hospitals were close to capacity and were only coping with an influx of Covid patients thanks to transfers between regions.
On average, about 40 percent of people tested for COVID-19 show a British coronavirus mutation. However, there are big differences between the regions.
For example, laboratories in the Liberec region reported up to a 70% share, Hradec Králové region about a 60% share.
The occupancy of hospitals and their intensive care units also differs. On average, 16 percent of ICU beds are available in the whole Czech Republic.
The official death toll from COVID-19 has reached 18,596 as of Tuesday, a rise of 166 which includes deaths from that day and revisions to previous days, according to ministry data.
The Czech Republic has had one of the highest cumulative per capita death rates in Europe. In total, 1.112 million infections have been recorded since March 2020.
Current hospitalizations rose to 6,171, about double the government’s target level. The ministry reported 483,833 vaccine shots have been administered.