Health Board: Workplace could create post for coronavirus alleviation

Director-general of the Health Board (Terviseamet) Üllar Lanno proposed on ETV's current affairs show "Ringvaade" that workplaces could reorganize to alleviate the spread of coronavirus, perhaps even creating a post that would be responsible for everything regarding alleviation measures.

Lanno said: "We must reorganize working groups, maybe even create positions such as epidemiological monitors - workers who would be put in charge, similar to how we have helping hands when it comes to cyber security."

There are currently more than 20 active outbreaks in Estonia and most of these are workplace outbreaks. Deputy Director General of the Health Board Mari-Anne Härma said on Wednesday that Wednesday's record 125 new cases may not stay a record for long as a new outbreak is developing in Harju County and Tallinn.

Härma said at the moment mainly working age people are mostly being infected rather than children or the elderly. The coronavirus is being contracted in workplaces and then spreading at home, and some cases are also being brought in from abroad.

Üllar Lanno said people still have a general sense that the coronavirus is soon to fizzle out. He assessed that a change in this paradigm could take significant time.

Lanno said current national testing capacity is insufficient to see the overall picture of spread in Estonia.

The freshly appointed Health Board director estimated that a vaccine could be available to Estonians before the next large wave of the novel coronavirus in fall of next year. "If the European Medicines Agency gives a sales permit to a vaccine, it will eventually reach Estonian people," Lanno said.

He concluded: "This all depends on how the pharmaceutical industry is able to register the vaccine and whether or not setback develop in the process, which could stop the registration or delay it. The current plan is that all this could happen during 2021. Time will show if it works out."


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Editor: Kristjan Kallaste

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