Citizens required to wear masks in public: Sotiris Tsiodras



Health Ministry spokesperson and infectious diseases expert, Professor Sotiris Tsiodras stressed that the upcoming gradual lifting of restrictive measures "should not be interpreted as a return to normalcy."

“We still avoid unnecessary movement, adhere to distance measures and avoid overcrowding. Any relaxation could be devastating. If we misjudge the facts, we will be driven very quickly from the limited circulation of the virus to a sudden rise and a second wave of the virus in our country,” Tsiodras continued.

The coronavirus task force will recommend that schools reopen, he added, but subcommittees at the Health Ministry are examining the parameters of opening schools before proposing a date. "The opening of schools is a scientific recommendation; it's the state that decides," he underlined. However, global statistics show "it is certain that children have a very low capability of infecting others."

Even after a partial lifting of measures, Tsiodras said that the committee of experts voted in majority that the use of masks will be a "mandatory measure while using public transport and in other busy areas, such as hospitals, grocery stores, diagnostic laboratories, clinics, hairdressers, barbershops, beauty salons, and all closed and busy places.”

Citing the World Health Organization, Tsiodras said it has added six new symptoms to its existing list of symptoms for COVID-19, beyond fever, cough and shortness of breath: chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat and loss of taste or smell.

Tsiodras also announced 17 new confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Greece in the last 24 hours, and 2 new deaths.

The total Covid-19 infections in Greece stands at 2,534.

Deaths total 136 since the start of the outbreak, while 43 patients are being treated in Intensive Care Units.

A total of 66,094 COVID-19 tests have been conducted in Greece.

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Tuesday is expected to address the nation about the gradual lifting of coronavirus measures.