Social minister: Government to discuss additional COVID-19 measures Friday

Tanel Kiik.
Tanel Kiik. Source: Vladislava Snurnikova/ERR

Minister of Social Affairs Tanel Kiik (Center) said government will meet on Friday to discuss potential supplemental restrictions to help prevent further spread of the coronavirus.

Kiik told ERR: "The government will meet today (Friday - ed.) to discuss the COVID-19 situation and to continue the debate that was left unfinished in some sense on Thursday, meaning what are the necessary steps to prevent the virus from spreading."

He noted that the government is congregating more often than usual because of recent hikes in infection rates.

Kiik said the Health Board's recommendations to restrict hobby and extracurricular activities will also be discussed. "It is likely reasonable to decrease the amount of hobby activites for some time in Harju County, Ida-Viru County and in the northern region. We will look at the places where the risk of infection is highest," he said.

The social affairs minister said it should be assessed if choir practices can be suspended or conducted at reduced capacities. "The question is what additional steps can be taken to ensure society stays as open as possible, while at the same time reducing risk of infection," Kiik said.

Infection rates have drastically increased among school children over recent weeks, which is why the Health Board is calling for a critical assessment into youth center and hobby activities across Estonia.

Health Board director Üllar Lanno recommended canceling all hobby activities in high risk areas, such as Harju County, Ida-Viru County, Tallinn and Tartu, until Christmas.

According to the Health Board, the highest risk of infection comes from hobbies such as choirs and sports trainings, where teams are in close contact.


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Editor: Kristjan Kallaste

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