Slovenia: Government extends state of epidemic for 30 days

Slovenia: Government extends state of epidemic for 30 days

Slovenian Government spokesman Jelko Kacin said at a press conference that the government had decided at yesterday’s correspondence session to extend the state of the epidemic in the Republic of Slovenia for an additional 30 days. The decree on prolonging the state of epidemic will come into force tomorrow, on Wednesday 18 November. The state of epidemic cannot be equated with the introduction of more draconian measures, however its declaration constitutes the legal framework that forms the basis for any action to be taken, including the activation of civil protection and other available forces, in an effort to curb the spread of the pandemic.

As he said, the review of today’s epidemiological facts indicates that the situation in hospitals remains serious. On Monday, 1388 new cases of coronavirus were recorded. 5326 tests were performed, with the share of positive tests at 26%. 1275 infected people are being treated in hospitals, 208 of them in the ICU. There have been 45 coronavirus-related deaths.

According to Nuška Čakš Jager, deputy head of the Center for Infectious Diseases at the National Institute of Public Health of Slovenia, the number of new coronavirus outbreaks globally is increasing. In Europe, there has been a higher 14-day cumulative incidence per 100,000 inhabitants than in Slovenia, the Czech Republic, Austria and Luxembourg. She cited a higher frequency of deaths in the Czech Republic, Belgium and Hungary. According to the latest data, the 14-day cumulative incidence per 100,000 inhabitants in Slovenia is 932.

As Čakš Jager explained, the share of infections in the active population has decreased, while infection among the elderly is increasing, including nursing homes. “By October 4, we had 242 infections in nursing homes, and 15.4802 by November”, she said. According to the representative of the NIJZ, the largest number of infections among schoolchildren was detected in high school students, while children in kindergartens represent a very small portion. According to the NIJZ, there are currently more than 19,000 active cases of infection in Slovenia.

The share of positive tests among daily PCR tests in Slovenia oscillates around 26 percent. Most cases were recorded in the Gorenjska and Pomurje regions. Concluding, the deputy official called for the transfer of the TAN code of all infected people to the #OstaniZdravin application, urging citizens to stay at home.

Borut Štrukelj from the Faculty of Pharmacy in Ljubljana also attended the press conference, providing a briefing on the latest developments regarding vaccines around the world. He said that “there are currently 54 vaccines that are in the clinical phase of research, that is, in the first, second or third phase. Of these, 12 vaccines are in the third phase, while no vaccine has yet been approved by regulatory authorities such as the European Agency for Medicines (EMA) or the U.S. Medicines Agency (FDA)”.

As he said, there are currently six so-called temporarily approved vaccines, but they have been approved by national agencies – two in Russia, where the third vaccine is currently in the approval phase, and four in China. “Chinese and Russian vaccines have somehow skipped the third phase of clinical trials and there still exists insufficient data about them”, Štrukelj added. /ibna