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Health Minister: We enter new phase in COVID-19 pandemic management process

We are at a critical point as we expect the number of COVID-19 cases to increase and since we are several weeks away from a peak, we are entering a new phase of managing the whole process. If the situation worsens, we will propose other measures that will increase the restriction, Health Minister Venko Filipche said Sunday.

Skopje, 5 April 2020 (MIA) – We are at a critical point as we expect the number of COVID-19 cases to increase and since we are several weeks away from a peak, we are entering a new phase of managing the whole process. If the situation worsens, we will propose other measures that will increase the restriction, Health Minister Venko Filipche said Sunday.

He said that the current measures against the spread of the coronavirus are adequate with adding some additional measures as mobile app could help health authorities to trace people who had come into contact with those infected with coronavirus.

At today’s online press briefing, Filipche announced that as of today, the Skopje-based September 8 hospital is ready to diagnose and treat COVID-19 patients which has 400 new available beds.

He said that hospital in Bitola will become a new regional center for treating COVID-19 patients, where, as he said, there are currently 35 beds available that can increase to 100.

He said that all public health institutions in the country have sufficient protective equipment, adding that next week they will increase the reserves.

Filipche noted that domestic companies have donated EUR 500.000 on the account of the Health Ministry including donations of medical devices, protective equipment and vehicles donated to the public health centres.

The Minister of Information Society and Administration Damjan Manchevski said that the mobile app for tracing people who had come into contact with those infected with coronavirus will be activated next week.

At the same time, it will guarantee the security of the personal data of the citizens who will have to voluntarily download it on their mobile phones.

Chairman of the Commission for Infectious Diseases Zarko Karadzovski in regard to the management of testing, said that North Macedonia is second only behind Slovenia in the number of coronavirus tests that have been conducted. We have entered the phase of large number of infected people and the peak is expected in the next two to three weeks.

The director of the Clinic for Infectious Diseases Clinic, Milena Stevanovikj said that 74 people had been hospitalized in the clinic adding that the mobile hospital will help us meet the needs of  hospitalization. She said six new patients have been admitted today, one of whom has died a few hours after being hospitalized. The two-year-old child that was admitted to the hospital on Saturday is in stable condition, she added.

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