A person who has tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) must stay at home until they are healthy. This means that 1,459 people in Estonia and their families are responsible for following the mobility restrictions during the emergency situation.
Kerly Virk, a representative of the Police Board, said the police have sometimes had to issue a fine people who continue to go outside after being diagnosed with COVID-19. The Emergency Act allows a fine of up to €2,000 to be issued to people not following the rules.
"In most cases, bringing the issue to their attention has helped," Virk said.
Based on the order head of the emergency situation, freedom of mobility is limited for 14 days the people who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 and the people living with them.
The infected person is considered healed when there has been no fever for 48 hours and strong respiratory symptoms for 24 hours, primarily cough, fever and a runny nose.
With the permission of the family doctor, the healthy person is allowed to continue with their normal life. People who have been hospitalized are recommended to stay at home for another two weeks after being given the all-clear by the hospital.
People living together with an infected person can leave the house only in exceptional cases, for example, when they are workers of health care or when they need to go to the grocery store.
However, going to the store is not recommended, and in the absence of helpful relatives or family members, a household with limited mobility must contact the local government, which is in that case obliged to bring the essentials.
However, a problem and an ethical concern may arise when someone in the local community is known to have been diagnosed with the coronavirus and a person living with the patient is seen outside the home.
Janar Filippov, Head of Communications at the Chancellor of Justice's Office told ERR: "The problem is that the local community and other strangers shouldn't really know anyone's health information - it's sensitive data. It's known to the police today, so the first and only course of action in this situation is to call the police."
"No one should be calling the police out of suspicion or gossip alone," Filippov said, adding that no one should be persecuted or discriminated against after suffering an illness or ending quarantine.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also shared the same message on Friday morning.
Until measures put in place to stop the spread of #covid19 have not yet been lifted, it's important to #stayhome and practice #socialdistancing. It's the least we can do as a community???? pic.twitter.com/RiXwTfRzG3— Estonian MFA ???????? (@MFAestonia) April 17, 2020
Editor: Roberta Vaino