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Czechia announces alleviation of coronavirus measures

Czechia announces alleviation of coronavirus measures

The improvements concern free movement and trade

On Tuesday, 7 April, the government of the Czech Republic announced the easing of measures limiting commercial activity and individual movement. This makes Czechia one of the first European countries to alleviate the restrictions, caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

April comes with improvements in free movement

The good news comes after three weeks under a state of emergency, caused by coronavirus, which started on 13 March in the country. Gatherings of more than 30 people, including at education establishments, were forbidden. Naturally, access to sports facilities has been restricted as well.

In relation to the fast development of coronavirus in the country, the measures were tightened even further. On 16 March, free movement was limited with the exception of travel to and from work and movement necessary to ensure basic human needs (such as those for food or medicine). A few days later, residents were obliged to wear facial protection at all times, and so on.

Only this week did the situation regarding the free movement of people and small commerce begin improving. Here is a non-exhaustive list of what Czech people are or will be allowed to do in the upcoming days:

  • As of 7 April, outdoor sports facilities can operate and individual outdoor sports without wearing a mask can be practised, respecting a distance of 2 metres and in the presence of up to 2 people other than family members. The associated indoor areas of the sports ground, in particular the common changing rooms, washrooms, showers and similar facilities, however, must not be used;
  • As of 9 April, several commercial establishments are allowed to open – crafts markets, construction material shops, ironmongeries and shops providing sale and service of bicycles, given that they follow strict hygiene standards;
  • As of 14 April, travelling abroad for "essential activities" will be allowed. This will include business trips, assembly of a production facility, visit to a doctor or a relative. Each trip will be followed by 14 days of obligatory quarantine upon return.

Smart quarantine in the Czech Republic

Czech citizens are yet to learn what the results of the so-called “smart quarantine” approach will be. The system employed in the Czech Republic should lead to early detection and to COVID-19 testing and to isolation in quarantine of as many potentially infected people as possible.

Its essential part is the collaboration with infected individuals using digital technologies with the objective of accurately identifying contacts to which they could have transferred the virus. Its ultimate goal: to alleviate restrictions so that people can return to their normal lives as soon as possible. A similar system of smart quarantine already works in the Republic of Korea and Singapore.



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