Greece distributes 94 million self-tests, 2000 monoclonal antibody doses; anti-viral pills follow

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Greece has distributed a total of 94 million self-tests to 7.8 million people and 2,000 monoclonal antibodies doses to date said to Alternate Health Minister Mina Gaga during a press briefing on Thursday.

During the briefing Gaga announced that anti-viral pills for Covid 19 are next to  be administered to  patients that qualify.

The platform for registration by their doctors will open on Friday, and patients will need to sign a release to receive them because there is a positive evaluation on them but not an official permit. Doctors will be obliged to enter progress on the disease on an online database on the 7th and 28th day after the patient has taken the medication.

The Alternate Health Minister said that there is no determination whether people who are intubated are suffering from the Delta or the more recent Omicron variant of the novel coronavirus, except for two patients in an ICU who have Omicron, and one of them was intubated for another reason. However, she said, "Infections of the respiratory system are a significant cause of death," and one must not think that Omicron is safe, especially with vulnerable groups of people.

The now-dominant Omicron variant of Covid-19 may bring milder symptoms but care should not be relaxed, as the Delta variant continues to send people to hospital, member of the Health Ministry's Covid committee Vana Papaevangelou said on Thursday.

During a regular briefing, the pediatric infectious diseases doctor said that 1 in 2 two people admitted to hospitals in Attica during the last week has been infected by the Delta variant. "Delta continues to exist and to give new infections," she said.

Papaevangelou also noted that the evaluation of Omicron's mildness is based on an international report that relates to younger and fully vaccinated people, so it is best to remain careful in terms of older and unvaccinated people, as well as with long Covid, or the long-term effects of the illness.

In terms of school infections, she said it was very low: of 2,000,000 children checked, the rate of those who tested positive is extremely low, at 1.4%. (Schools require teachers and students to test regularly.)