State of emergency in Latvia will definitely have to be prolonged - expert

  • 2020-03-25
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - Due to the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus, the state of emergency in Latvia will definitely have to be prolonged, as Uga Dumpis, head of the Infection Monitoring Service at Pauls Stradins Clinical University Hospital and the Health Ministry's chief infectious diseases specialist, told LETA.

Asked if Latvia should introduce stricter measures already at this time, the expert said that the increase in the number of Covid-19 cases so far had been relatively steady. That means that there is no reason to introduce any additional security measures. "However, medical facilities need to be even better prepared for receiving patients," believes Dumpis.

"We have to understood that such additional measures can cause a number of other medical and social problems, and once they are lifted, the spread of the infection can accelerate," the professor explained, urging citizens to change their daily habits and "live differently, observing social distancing and reducing contact with other people to the minimum".

There is a risk that the infection rate will increase among the elderly and medical personnel. "In a way, this is inevitable," said Dumpis. "But I don't think it can reach the same scale as in Italy, because we have taken precautionary measures much earlier," he added.