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Both criteria met for transition from black to red phase of relaxation of measures

Today’s press conference on the current situation with regard to COVID-19 was attended by Director of the Maribor Unit of the National Institute of Public Health (NIJZ) Zoran Simonovič and Marta Grgič Vitek, National Vaccination Programme Coordinator at the NIJZ.

Marta Grgič Vitek, National Vaccination Programme Coordinator at the NIJZ

Marta Grgič Vitek, National Vaccination Programme Coordinator at the NIJZ | Author Daniel Novaković, STA

Of the 5,384 PCR tests performed on Tuesday, 1,396 (25.9%) were positive. Among the 5,924 rapid antigen tests performed, 302 infections were detected (5.1%). The average of new positive Covid cases over the last seven days was 1,272, which is below the threshold of 1,350 for the transition from the black to the red phase of relaxation of measures. 1,178 patients were in hospital yesterday, 22 less than on Monday. 181 patients were in intensive care, 6 less than on Monday. A total of 26 patients died, 24 in hospitals and 2 in nursing homes. The new positive cases were concentrated in the following municipalities: Ajdovščina 33, Nova Gorica 50, Brežice 29, Novo mesto 26, Celje 32, Grosuplje 21, Ig 19, Domžale 19, Izola 19, Koper 62, Kranj 63, Krško 31, Litija 30, Murska Sobota 20, Radovljica 22, Slovenska Bistrica 27, Tržič 16, Velenje 16, Žalec 23, Ljubljana 186, Maribor 66. The 14-day incidence per 100,000 people reached 980.7 positive cases yesterday.

On Thursday, 14 January, the NIJZ transitioned to a new system for reporting data relating to nursing homes. These are weekly reports, on the basis of which the data for the period from 14 January to 17 January indicate that there were 123 new positive cases among nursing home residents, bringing the total in the second wave to 10,715, and 104 new cases among staff, bringing the second-wave total to 4,574. During the same period, 16 residents and 20 staff members became positive at five separate social care institutions.

Simonovič presented the 14-day cumulative incidence per 100 inhabitants for the Podravska region, which was 1,279 cases for the period from 28 November to 11 December, and 1,005 cases for the period from 4 January to 17 January, which is a significant decrease. According to data from the Podravska Regional Unit of the NIJZ, two thirds of employees at healthcare institutions are already protected, partly through vaccinations and partly due to immunity among patients who have recovered from the disease. The highest numbers of positive cases at nursing homes were recorded at the Poljčane, Ormož and Senecuri nursing homes, where between 85 and 95% of all residents were positive. The lowest number of positive cases was at the Lenart nursing home, at around 30%. A total of 347 vials were distributed to hospitals this week, which amounts to between 1,735 and 2,082 doses, and 1,363 vials for healthcare centres, or between 6,815 and 8,178 doses.

Grgič Vitek presented the main highlights of the Minister of Health’s letter to providers of Covid-19 vaccinations. First of all they should strictly follow the order of groups approved to receive vaccinations, based on the European and national vaccination strategies. Additional lists of people from those priority groups should be prepared in advance, so that candidates for vaccination can be contacted immediately in the event that doses remain unused due to lack of participation of persons on the initial list or other reasons. In accordance with the instructions of the European Medicines Agency and the manufacturer Pfizer, 6 doses can be drawn from each vial. The most recent important recommendation is that vaccinations be very accurately recorded, as vaccinations will soon be carried out using vaccines from several manufacturers, and therefore accuracy will be important.

The NIJZ have reported three serious side effects of the vaccine: the death of an elderly female resident at a nursing home, a second fatality which occurred 12 days after vaccination, and a third case which occurred a few hours after vaccination, where the patient fainted and was hospitalised, but no adverse effects on health were recorded while the patient was under observation.