Scientific council recommends rapid testing school children

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A negative COVID-19 rapid test. Source: Urmet Kook/ERR

Last week, the government's scientific advisory council recommended reinstating the 2+2 rules outside, closing all restaurants and rapid testing children for coronavirus at school.

The council makes proposals and recommendations to the government every Tuesday, and ERR's Estonian language portal published the full list on Friday.

The council's recommendations were based on the fact the infection rate - R - is 1.25, which means the number of new cases is growing and the virus is spreading; coronavirus is spreading fastest in Saaremaa, Tallinn, Ida-Viru and Lääne-Viru counties; and that Estonia's 14-day infection rate is one of the highest in Europe.

Last week, after receiving the proposals, the government introduced new measures restricting shops and eateries to 25 percent capacity and closing all non-essential stores on weekends from March 6. This fell short of the council's proposals.

The council's recommendations were:

1. Maintain the measures imposed last week (introduced on March 1 and 3).

2. Implement all the proposals made by the Scientific Council last week.

3. Only allow catering establishments to sell take away meals.

4. Reestablish the 2+2 rule outside.

5. From 15 March, allow contact learning for pupils taking exams for two days a week if regional infection rates allow and following social distancing measures.

6. Test rapid antibody testing in interested schools. 

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Editor: Helen Wright

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