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Life resumes in the Hungarian countryside

Restrictions on movement and shopping remain in place in coronavirus hotspots Budapest and Pest County

  • May 04, 2020 20:30
  • Author TheMayor.EU
Medium budapest police coronavirus
Source: MTI

Hungarians living in the countryside awoke today to a relaxed regime of restrictions, as the country entered the second phase of its response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Terraces and gardens of catering establishments, beaches, outdoor baths, open-air museums and zoos are beginning to open.

However, curfew measures and shop restrictions will remain in place in Budapest and in Pest County, as most infections are concentrated there. Of the 2054 cases confirmed nationwide to this day, 1290 are registered in Budapest and Pest County.

No time limit for shops, masks mandatory for shoppers and commuters

From Monday, shops can operate in the countryside without a time limit, meaning they don’t have to close at 3 p.m. However, the 1.5-meter distance must be maintained everywhere, and people over 65 can shop only between 9 a.m. and noon.  

Using a face mask or a scarf will be compulsory in shops and in public transport and police is ready to enforce compliance, Lieutenant Colonel Róbert Kiss, member of the Operative Board told an online press conference.

Compulsory medical tests for arrivals at Budapest Airport

Passengers arriving at Budapest’s Ferenc Liszt International Airport which saw the resumption of some flights will undergo compulsory tests for coronavirus upon arrival, Kiss announced. Those who test positive may be isolated in a hospital or ordered to stay in home quarantine for 14 days.

Chief medical officer Cecília Müller commented at an online news briefing today that the situation in Hungary has become balanced, with no significant increase in the number of new infections or deaths registered per day for about a week. This allows for the gradual restart of outpatient healthcare, but in a cautious manner, she stressed.

Cecília Müller said that people should check in with a GP by phone, go to an outpatient clinic only with a prior appointment, and that such medical facilities can serve a maximum of four patients in one hour. She urged patients to continue to receive healthcare that did not require a face-to-face meeting, such as consultations carried out by phone or online.

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