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Athens, Greece

Greece announces strict restrictions for unvaccinated people

Greece announces strict restrictions for unvaccinated people

New rules will apply from 13 September 2021 until 31 March 2022

On 24 August, the Greek Minister of Health Vassilis Kikilias announced that new COVID restrictions will come into force on 13 September. However, unlike previous measures, these will only affect unvaccinated individuals.

Kikilias explained the reason for this difference, noting that more than 90% of patients in COVID ICU are currently unvaccinated. Therefore, by enforcing restrictions for those who are not vaccinated, the government seeks to shield the health system from heavy hospitalisations.

Weekly tests

According to a press release by the Ministry of Health, unvaccinated workers will have to take a rapid antigen test every week. What is more, those working in education, tourism, catering, television, film, theatre, music, and dance will have to take two rapid antigen tests every week. These tests must be performed exclusively in private diagnostic centres at the cost of 10 euros per test.

Unvaccinated pupils will also have to undergo two self-tests per week; however, these will be free of charge and paid for by the state. Similarly, university students will have to take two tests per week although these will not be covered by the state.

Banned from restaurants and clubs

Those who do not have proof of full vaccination or recovery will not be allowed to visit restaurants, cafes, bars, and clubs. While they may visit theatres, cinemas, museums, and gyms, entry will only be permitted if individuals have taken a rapid antigen test no more than 48 hours before.

Despite this, all companies will be able to deny unvaccinated individuals access and to operate only for those who are fully vaccinated or recovered.

Unvaccinated travellers to all mainland and island destinations in Greece will also have to take a rapid antigen test up to 48 hours before their journey. Minors below the age of 17 must take self-tests instead.

These measures will be in force until 31 March 2022. Non-compliance will result in job suspension for employees, a ban on attending classes, or a travel ban for travellers.

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