From Saturday, July 25 at midnight, it will be mandatory to wear face masks at indoor public gatherings with over 100 people, including nightclubs. The Health Minister Adam Vojtěch (ANO) informed Czech Television today afternoon.
“We are not planning to close certain industries or limit the free movement of people, but prevention is needed. The measures taken are based on information from the regional hygienic stations,” said Vojtěch.
“This measure does not concern shops or restaurants, but specifically sports and cultural events,” the minister specified.
A maximum of 500 people seated in five separate sectors, each comprising 100 people, will be allowed at indoor events.
The number of cases is growing, but the risk group over the age of 65 is not affected and there are no more serious cases that require hospitalization. “However, a number of smaller outbreaks show that there may be potential for a community spread,” said the minister.
An outbreak of coronavirus linked to a music club in Prague has recently increased to 98 cases, including footballers from several of the city’s clubs.
PM Babiš stressed that the Czech Republic had managed the first wave of the epidemic very well, but expressed concerns about the daily increase in coronavirus cases.
The number of new cases in the Czech Republic has been growing significantly in recent days. On Tuesday, the country recorded 212 new positive people. On Wednesday, 247.
The number of active coronavirus infections topped 5,000 in the Czech Republic for the first time after labs reported the highest daily rise in nearly a month.
The Czech government will discuss the resumption of the Central Crisis Staff on Monday.
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From Monday, May 11, Prague’s Public Transport will strengthen bus connections limited from March due to the coronavirus epidemic.
Buses will run according to the so-called half-holiday timetables, which are common in January and February. The DPP is now strengthening its operations “following the relaxation of emergency measures related to the COVID-19 pandemic and the gradual increase in the number of passengers,” stated DPP on their website.
Furthermore, buses will no longer stop automatically at all stops, so passengers need to press the button.
However, boarding restrictions on trams and buses do not change. It will be possible to get on only through the middle and rear doors.
The cable car to Petřín will reopen on 11 May, but with some restrictions. It will carry a maximum of 30 passengers in one cabin and will not stop at Nebozízek.
Passengers need to wear face masks and keep a safe distance of two meters while waiting.
From May 25, DPP expects to return to its original timetables on suburban bus lines. On June 1, seasonal trains from Prague to Central Bohemia should also restart.
According to Prague’s Public Transport, the renewal of trains and buses to Central Bohemia Region must be approved by the Central Bohemian Crisis Staff.
dir=”ltr”>AUTOBUSY PODLE POLOPRÁZDNINOVÝCH JÍZDNÍCH ŘÁDŮ A NÁVRAT ZASTÁVEK NA ZNAMENÍ I Od 11. 5. pojedou autobusy na městských linkách v Praze opět podle tzv. poloprázdninových jízdních řádů. Zastávky na znamení u autobusů i tramvají vracíme do běžného režimu.
— Dopravní podnik hl. m. Prahy, akciová společnost (@DPPOficialni) May 10, 2020
The Central Crisis Staff agreed that the end of the state of emergency on May 17 will also mean the end of widespread wearing of face masks in public.
The president of the Czech Dental Chamber, Roman Šmucler, released an interview with iDNES.cz on Wednesday. However, face masks will be still mandatory in closed spaces and public transport.
“We agreed that after the end of the state of emergency, masks use will be compulsory only in closed spaces, and public transport. We will follow the German model,” said Šmucler.
According to the Minister of Health Adam Vojtěch, “wearing face masks is not tied to an emergency. This is one of the most important measures we have taken. At a time when measures are being relaxed, when people are starting to meet more, masks are even more important,” he added. According to him, “this decision cannot be rushed”.
The Central Crisis Staff consists of thirty experts.
Czech Republic reported just 55 more cases of the coronavirus on Thursday, the smallest daily increase since March 14.
“We must not loosen our guard until the last confirmed patient is recovered,” Minister of Health said.
The Czech Republic had 7,188 confirmed cases of coronavirus infection by Friday Morning. So far 2,186 people have recovered and 213 people have died.
Czech labs have tested over 203 000 people to date.
On Thursday evening, the Czech cabinet lifted a ban on its citizens traveling abroad for reasons other than work following an improvement in conditions of the coronavirus outbreak.
Czech citizens and foreigners with permission to enter the country have two options for arrival in the Czech Republic from the midnight on Friday 24 April 2020: present a negative coronavirus test upon return or be subject to two-week quarantine.
Moreover, the Czech government has also removed the restrictions on the free movement of persons.
“The Czech government will cancel restrictions on free movement as of Friday, April 24, and allow groups of up to 10 people to meet in public. So far, public gatherings were limited to two people,” said Minister Vojtěch during a press conference.
Producers of illegal drugs in the Czech Republic are suffering due to border closures enacted due to the coronavirus crisis, according to Jakub Frydrych, head of the National Anti-Drug Central.
Illicit drug manufacturers do not have access to ingredients for methamphetamine, and there is a lack of heroin in Prague. On the other hand, marijuana supplies could exceed demand, says Frydrych.
Although it is too soon to speak about major changes, the measures against the spread of coronavirus have already been reflected in the prices and quality of methamphetamine, he said.
Given that drug manufacturers usually smuggle substances containing pseudoephedrine necessary for methamphetamine production from Poland, closed borders make it very difficult for them to procure the main ingredients for drug production.
However, Frydrych explains that the Vietnamese community, which is the dominant producer of illegal drugs in the Czech Republic, has been less affected by the situation than the smaller Czech manufacturers producing an average of 50 grams per production cycle.
In the case of heroin and cocaine, i.e. drugs that are mostly imported into the Czech Republic, the National Anti-Drug Central reports a major shortage in supplies. Heroin, for example, is usually imported by Balkan crime groups.
As for the price increase, according to Frydrych, wholesale prices for methamphetamine among dealers increased by approximately 200,000 CZK per kilogram.
For drug addicts, the situation is all the more complicated because they have often got money to buy drugs through criminal activity such as stealing. But many shops are currently closed over coronavirus.
Furthermore, due to the current situation, the drug dealing itself has changed.
“The importance of mail-order services is rising,” said Frydrych, adding that more drugs are also sold on the so-called dark web market, although this trend was already occurring before the coronavirus epidemic.
On the other hand, Frydrych thinks that there might soon be a marijuana surplus in the Czech Republic. The country is a relatively large exporter of marijuana, but due to closed borders, a significant part of cannabis will remain for sale on the domestic market.