The Hungarian Medical Chamber recommends restrictions to fight the novel coronavirus epidemic and proposes “constructive dialogue” with decision makers in the modernisation of the healthcare system.
The chamber said in a statement on Tuesday that based on international trends, the epidemic can be expected to quickly deteriorate and neighbouring countries have already introduced measures based on expert recommendations.
It called on the government to take immediate action “on the verge of a health care crisis, in the interest of doctors and patients”.
The chamber proposed stricter and more consistent rules for mass events, including tighter control of mask-wearing and social distancing regulations. It also proposed further restrictions on the opening hours and number of guests in restaurants and entertainment venues, and the reintroduction of shopping times reserved for elderly people who are most threatened by the epidemic.
The chamber said the government “left the medical chamber alone in the fight against virus sceptics and groups belittling the dangers of the epidemic.” It called for cooperation in order to prevent such groups from creating a fake sense of security and reduce the effectiveness of personal protection.
The chamber also said that current screening and contact tracing capacities were insufficient for monitoring the spread of the epidemic and the government should draw the public’s attention to the importance of individual prevention and reducing the number of social contacts.
Chief medical officer: Chamber’s proposals under consideration
Proposals by the Hungarian Medical Chamber to increase restrictions in the fight against the novel coronavirus are being considered by the operative board responsible for handling the epidemic, the chief medical officer told a press conference on Wednesday.
Cecília Müller said in response to a question that some of the chamber’s proposals announced on Tuesday had already been implemented. Ways to enforce existing regulations more effectively are also being examined, she said, adding that the operative board was open to cooperation with the medical chamber.
Müller said Hungary’s health-care system was prepared for handling the current wave of the epidemic, with everyone getting the care they need “at the highest level”. She said screening capacities were being increased, with 15,596 PCR tests carried out in the past 24 hours and the national blood transfusion service having joined the group of screening laboratories.
Featured photo illustration by Zoltán Balogh/MTI