Infectious diseases expert warns Greece is "just one step before a lockdown"

Imposing temporary, localised lockdowns is the “strongest weapon we have” to successfully contain the surge of new coronavirus infections, Professor Nikos Sipsas, an expert in infectious diseases, told Skai TV.

“We are just one step before a lockdown…We need to act preemptively and preventatively,” he added.

Professor Nikos Sipsas warned that if measures that went into effect on Monday do not show any improvement, localised lockdowns will inevitably follow.

“The lockdowns will be periodical, imposed for two weeks until the epidemic curve starts to flatten and then for another two weeks if necessary,” the infectious disease expert concluded.

Greece recorded 346 new cases of COVID-19 in the latest 24-hour reporting period, the largest daily spike since the first case was registered in the country in late February.

This raises the total number of cases to 15,928.

2,651 are considered to be related to travel from abroad and 6,687 are related to an already known case.

Seventy-seven individuals are in ICU. Their median age is 69 years, and 21 of them are women. 88.3% have an underlying condition or are aged 70 years and above.

A total of 185 patients have been discharged from ICUs since the start of the pandemic in Greece.

The country’s pandemic death toll stands at 352. The median age of all was 78 years and 96.9% of the deceased had an underlying condition and/or age of 70 years or more.

It is recalled new COVID-19 regulations were announced for Athens and Attica.

Furthermore, Deputy Civil Protection Minister Nikos Hardalias announced the suspension of all outdoor theatrical performances as of Thursday, September 24.

He also announced that the government will create a new platform in the website where citizens will be informed about the restrictive measures that apply in their region.