In a press conference on Monday, Greek Government Spokesman Stelios Petsas stated that country’s top priority after the end of the lockdown is to open schools safely.
Greece has been under a strict nationwide lockdown, set to end on January 7, since early in November.
Petsas stated on Monday that officials are hoping to reopen schools the same week that the lockdown ends, while of course taking all necessary anti-virus precautions.
Although schools initially remained open under lockdown, they closed in mid-November due to spikes in the number of coronavirus cases.
While he said all societies and economies around the world were “tested” in 2020 by the Covid-19 pandemic, Petsas argued that Greece has handled the unprecedented crisis very well compared to its European neighbors.
“Our lives changed and our country suffered the repercussions of the pandemic, but both during the first wave and the second, we have done comparatively better than many other countries,” Petsas told reporters.
According to figures released by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, the nation of Greece, apart from certain regions in the country’s north, had lower infection rates than much of Europe, Petsas noted.
He also stated that the start of Greece’s Covid-19 vaccination campaign, dubbed “Eleftheria,” on Sunday, one day after the shot’s arrival in the country, marked a “historic day.” Due to the life-saving inoculation, the country is now on the path toward normalcy, he added.
Petsas argued, however, that the arrival of the vaccine does not signal any loosening of the current anti-virus measures.
The country will continue to follow its two-pronged approach toward the virus, one of strict measures in addition to widespread vaccination of the population.
Greece Records 476 Cases, 66 Deaths
A total of 476 cases of Covid-19 were diagnosed in Greece on Monday, 134 more cases than had been recorded in the country on Sunday.
Tragically, 66 people with the virus passed away in the country over the past 24-hour-period, which is 13 more than yesterday.
Currently, 467 patients with Covid-19 are intubated in Greece, just two more than those who were intubated in the country on Sunday.
A large portion of Monday’s cases were diagnosed in the areas surrounding Greece’s two largest urban centers — Athens and Thessaloniki.
In Attica, home to the capital city of Athens, there were 188 cases. In the center of Athens, 60 cases were diagnosed.
A total of 91 new cases were recorded in Thessaloniki, Greece’s second largest city.
In total, 135,931 cases of Covid-19 have been recorded in the country since the beginning of the pandemic, including all those who have recovered from the virus.
Of this total, 5,356 are associated with foreign travel, and 40,165 are associated with contact with a known case.
Of the 467 patients intubated currently, 80.5% are over the age of 70 or suffer from preexisting conditions. Their median age is 67, and 146 of the patients are female.
A total of 862 patients have been discharged from ICUs around the country since the beginning of the pandemic.
The 66 new deaths recorded on Monday bring the total number of fatalities in the country to 4,672. Of all those who lost their lives after suffering from the virus, a total of 1,899 have been female.
The median age of those who passed away with Covid-19 is 79, and 95.4% of them were over the age of 70 or suffered from underlying health issues.