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The National Institute of Public Health Will Conduct More In-depth Analyses on the Origin of Infections

The press conference on the current situation regarding the COVID-19 disease was attended by Metoda Dodič Fikfak, Director of the Institute of Occupational, Traffic and Sports Medicine, members of the expert team preparing the Sixth Anti-Coronavirus Package (ACP6) Jure Knez from Dewesoft and Dušan Olaj, General Manager of Duol, and the government spokesman Jelko Kacin.

On Tuesday, 2,013 new coronavirus cases were confirmed. 6,813 tests were conducted, which means that the share of positive tests was 29.55 percent. There are currently 1,280 infected patients being treated in hospitals, of those 209 in intensive care units. 43 people have died from COVID-19. The number of infections is increasing in nursing homes.

At the press conference, the government spokesperson Jelko Kacin emphasised that the number of infections in nursing homes increased by 312 in a single day, i.e. yesterday, which is the highest number so far. There are currently 2,131 active infections among residents and 847 among employees, with 59 testing positive yesterday.

According to the government spokesperson, infections of residents of nursing homes represent 15 percent of the cases confirmed on Tuesday, and if we include infected employees of nursing homes, these infections represent 20 percent of all the cases that were confirmed on Tuesday.

It is also for this reason that the National Institute of Public Health adopted the decision to again conduct more in-depth analyses on the origin of infections. According to Mr Kacin, every hotspot is important if we wish to contain the spreading, including those in the economy.

Metoda Dodič Fikfak, Director of the Institute of Occupational, Traffic and Sports Medicine, presented the analysis of infected persons according to occupational groups, which was conducted by the National Institute of Public Health (NIPH) from 10 to 17 November 2020. 58 CEOs, 145 sales clerks, 68 doctors, and 221 members of nursing staff tested positive during this period. “Adding 78 positive medical assistants, we arrive at the number 300. There were also 403 allied health professionals who tested positive, along with 50 chefs, 100 cleaning persons, and 44 police officers,” she said.

Ms Dodič Fikfak emphasised that it was very clear that professions, which are directly involved in managing the epidemic, have a higher number of infections; however, she believes these numbers are still too high and has asked for stricter rules of behaviour and more self-protection.

Furthermore, she called upon those responsible to allow, when and where possible, work from home and emphasised that even asymptomatic infected persons can work from home. She asked the competent ministries to prepare, as soon as possible, a protocol for the professional use of rapid antigen tests, which are in use in numerous European countries, not only in healthcare but also in the economy.

Dušan Olaj, member of the expert team preparing the Sixth Anti-Coronavirus Package (ACP6) and General Manager of Duol, emphasised that practically 100 percent of the economy has been infected with COVID-19, which has led the government to set up a consultative committee for the preparation of anti-coronavirus measures. The members have only a consultative role and the main task of the committee is to protect the employees, who are the basic cell of the economic system.

Jure Knez from Dewesoft and another member of the expert team preparing the ACP6 said that until we get a permanent solution in the form of a vaccine, we all have to do our best to keep the economy in shape, allowing us to continue to work normally. He emphasised that we must be aware that the health crisis will be followed by an economic one for which we must be prepared.