Weekly newsletter

Even stricter lockdown conditions have been suggested by the Hungarian Medical Chamber’s president, Gyula Kincses, than the ones the Chamber previously recommended for Hungary. On Tuesday, Kincses stated that “a short but strict lockdown is much more effective than one that is more lenient and drawn out.” Unlike the Medical Chamber, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry has already shared its reopening ideas with Prime Minister Viktor Orbán.

The Hungarian Medical Chamber (MOK) published a list of recommendations on Monday calling for stricter conditions than what the government has put in place, since the workforce of Hungary’s healthcare system is overburdened and with no more available workers.

Medical Chamber: Situation is Dire, Further Restrictions Needed
Medical Chamber: Situation is Dire, Further Restrictions Needed

Hungary’s healthcare system has been strained for the past weeks and numbers continue to grow. The presidency of the Hungarian Medical Chamber published a somber announcement on Monday night, in which they made serious requests to the public and government decision-makers. Since there are no more available workers in healthcare, which is already under extreme strain, […]Continue reading

They ask the government to limit the number of customers in shops, prohibit groups of more than three people in public (except for families), and to close all stores except grocery stores and pharmacies.

Medical Chamber President Believes Hungary’s Lockdown Not Strict Enough

On Tuesday, the Chamber’s president Gyula Kincses called for even stricter measures than the ones his colleagues at MOK suggested.

In an interview with InfoRádió, Kincses said that “the vaccine is the future, but tomorrow is our responsibility. The vaccine will be the one which allows for a May-June reopening. But whoever is being inoculated next week has no guarantee that they will not end up in a hospital or an ICU this week.”

Nearly 10,000 More People Died In Hungary in 2020 than a Year Before
Nearly 10,000 More People Died In Hungary in 2020 than a Year Before

In 2020, nearly 10,000 more people died in Hungary than a year earlier. The increase is clearly due to the coronavirus epidemic, but it is worrying that the mortality rate only increased during the second wave, and drastically. In this period alone, nearly 15,000 more people died than in the same period of the previous […]Continue reading

Kincses considers it everyone’s individual responsibility to protect themselves, and not to catch the virus. According to him, there should be far more public discipline during a lockdown in Hungary.

Outside of grocery stores and pharmacies everything should be closed. Why should convenience stores remain open? All basic toiletries and cleaning supplies can be accessed at grocery stores. And people should plan their shopping ahead. It should not occur that I run to the store for some butter today and go again tomorrow for a kilo of bread. Grocery shopping should occur once a week.”

Kincses added that “more people die in two days now than the total number of people who died in last Spring’s wave” (when an almost full lockdown had been in effect for months).

Chamber of Commerce Shares Reopening Ideas

Unlike Kincses, the Hungarian Chamber of Commerce and Industry suggests the slow reopening of stores and plazas. They suggest a reduced number of shoppers who must maintain social distancing.

Reopening in Three Weeks Unlikely if Vaccination Rate Doesn't Increase
Reopening in Three Weeks Unlikely if Vaccination Rate Doesn't Increase

Although new coronavirus cases and deaths hit record highs each day, the Prime Minister spoke about the possibility of reopening the country in his regular Friday morning interview. Viktor Orbán said Covid-related restrictions could be eased when the number of vaccinated Hungarians reaches 2.5 million. Based on this, we have taken a look at the […]Continue reading

In every store, they suggest shoppers be required to maintain 15 to 20 square meters of distance, for immunity certificates to be put to use (even in catering and tourism), and for the lifting of time restrictions in stores.

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán met with the Chamber’s leaders on Tuesday at the Carmelite Monastery, where they informed him of their recommendations. Orbán shared the suggestions on Facebook, adding that human life comes first, meaning that reopening cannot begin until every person above the age of 65 is vaccinated.

If Gyula Kincses’ suggestions are put into effect, Hungary’s lockdown would be revamped to two weeks of never before enacted restrictions, which the MOK president believes to be necessary.

Hungary's Healthcare Close to Capacity of Effective Ventilator Treatment
Hungary's Healthcare Close to Capacity of Effective Ventilator Treatment

Hungary’s healthcare system is overburdened and understaffed. The nationwide total capacity of effective ventilator care is being reached, and some hospitals are already resorting to prioritizing patients with higher chances of survival, according to reports. The rate of infection does not seem to be waning. There are currently 10,284 people hospitalized due to the coronavirus, […]Continue reading

Perhaps if Kincses’ recommendations are put into effect, they may pave the way for the Chamber of Commerce’s ideas to be applied in a slow, gradual reopening. Regardless of how strict restrictions are, members of the community already trust and expect one another to act responsibly during this pandemic.

Feautured photo illustration by György Varga/MTI