Will Autumn Greet Us Without Any Croatian Epidemiological Measures?

Lauren Simmonds

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As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the temperatures are becoming intolerable for many, and air conditioning units are working hard. The outbreak of the coronavirus infection at a time when we’re still far from colder days, darker nights and spending more time indoors, is not at all encouraging. Due to the sudden increase in the number of coronavirus patients, neighbouring Slovenia is introducing restrictions on visits to hospitals, and it is once again insisting on the wearing of protective masks in healthcare institutions. Here in Croatia, so far, there are no indications to suggest there might be an introduction of new protective measures against the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The Croatian Institute of Public Health (HZJZ) is not preparing any special Croatian epidemiological measures because – as they say – they already now have enough experience to deal with new waves of the pandemic should they occur.

“Given that we already have various sorts of experiences with it now, we’ll only apply certain experiences if we judge that it is necessary. We all hope that the measures will not be reactivated, but we can’t say that for sure in advance,” epidemiologist Iva Pem Novosel told Novi list. Everything, she added, will depend on the mass of the number of patients, and the level of intensity of the spread of the infection in the coming months. If there is a sudden increase in the number of new cases, it will be necessary to think about reintroducing some measures, but not as strict as those we’ve come to hate to remember.

“We’d all honestly like to avoid introducing any Croatian epidemiological measures, but it’s difficult for us to give forecasts at this moment in time. It’s likely that there will be a stronger increase in cases, but it all depends on the appearance of new variants, which we can’t know about in advance. We don’t like to make forecasts because we can easily make mistakes. It’s true that in autumn, with the cooling of the weather, and due to the very nature of the spread of the coronavirus, sees an increase in intensity, as is the case with other respiratory viruses. Nobody can say what that increase is going to look like. That really cannot be known in advance,” Pem Novosel repeated.

Although we have been living without any Croatian epidemiological measures for some time now, and we’ve already somewhat forgotten them, the fact is that almost on a daily basis we’re hearing about someone we know, or someone they know, unwell with omicron. No matter how much we want to forget it, the virus is still very much thriving in and around us. Epidemiologists are fully aware of this, but they don’t expect anything drastic to occur.

“The situation really is monitored on a daily basis. We hope it won’t escalate before September, but omicron is highly contagious. We’re lucky that people are getting together a bit less. There’s now no school, people are off on holiday, so people have dispersed, and therefore the chance of spreading omicron is lower. As for autumn, we can’t say yet. If we are ready for anything, then we’re ready for things to get worse if they do go that way. We hope that we won’t be surprised by something unprecedented. It just depends on the scenario. If it stays like this, then we expect that hospitals will not be overloaded and there will be no need to introduce any new Croatian epidemiological measures, maybe only mild ones, and if some fiercely contagious variant emerges that would cause a very large increase in the number of new infections, then we’ll think about it all more seriously.

“You never know what’s waiting around the corner, but we don’t expect any dramatic situations to unfold,” she concluded.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated lifestyle section.


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