“The Indian variant has been identified in Međimurje, Šibenik-Knin, Varaždin, Split-Dalmatia, and Zagreb counties. Naturally, we are concerned,” Capak told a regular COVID press conference.
Indian variant spreads 30 to 40 times faster.
“The Indian variant spreads 30 to 40 times faster than the classic and UK variant, which dominated recently. Indications exist that the contagion is more serious and that it affects younger people, and if it starts spreading among us, we will have to apply stricter measures,” said Capak.
Croatia has registered 118 new COVID cases over the past 24 hours, slightly more than last week. However, the number over the entire week decreased by 25%. The highest incidence rate is in Zadar County due to recent celebrations following a basketball game when fans did not adhere to epidemiological measures. As a consequence, 70% of new cases registered in Zadar County are people younger than 40.
“That is a warning for all of us,” Capak said.
He added that according to the 14-day incidence rate, Croatia ranks 11th among EU countries and 20th for the fatality rate. The current rate of positive cases among those tested is 2.9%, he said.
COVID certificate verification app downloaded more than 3,000 times
The head of the COVID response team, Interior Minister Davor Božinović, said that the COVID verification application had been downloaded more than 3,000 times. It is currently available in the Apple store and should soon be available in the Google store.
Božinović called on local authorities not to allow uncontrolled mass gatherings not to lose control of the epidemic.
Testing criteria to be changed
Considering that Digital Green Certificates enter into force on 1 July, the national criteria for testing as proof of recovery from COVID will change.
“As of 1 July, new testing criteria will enter into force so that fast antigen tests that come back positive will need to be confirmed by a PCR test. More than 45,000 people who were confirmed positive with antigen tests will as of next week be able to obtain COVID certificates,” said Capak.
Even though the vaccination rate has slowed down and the set target of 55% of people inoculated by the end of June will not be achieved, Capak is convinced that that target will be reached soon.
Asked how they intend to convince 25% of the population that refuse to be vaccinated, Capak said that inoculation would mean that you can attend certain events, they will be rewarded with concerts and in other ways. Employers will be allowed to demand that employees who are not inoculated “be constantly tested.”
EU citizens from green zones do not need quarantine or testing
Capak said that EU citizens coming to Croatia from green zones do not need to go into quarantine or be tested and freely enter the country.
The most important thing is that Croatia largely depends on tourism and needs to remain in the green zone. In that case, everyone will be able to return to their countries without additional restrictions. We need to remain in the green. That is in the interest of Croatia’s health and economy, said Božinović.
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