Czech Republic coronavirus updates, Dec. 9: plans to extend the state of emergency, Prymula warns of peak after holidays

Czech government officials plan to request another extension of the state of emergency today.

Samantha Tatro

Written by Samantha Tatro Published on 09.12.2020 08:40 (updated on 09.12.2020) Reading time: 2 minutes

The Czech government plans to vote today on the current state of emergency for another 30 days, as the number of new daily COVID-19 cases hit its highest number in more than two weeks.

The country reported 5,848 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, according to new data from the Health Ministry. The number is significantly higher than other recent daily increases.

As the pandemic continues, officials hope to extend the state of emergency until January 11. In their request for the extension, officials will present numbers from Director of IHIS, Ladislav Dušek, who predicts the country will have a daily increase of more than 5,000 cases by New Year's Eve. The prediction will also threaten hospitals.

The government also plans to include a request to increase fines for violating anti-COVID measures.

The forecast for future coronavirus cases looks bleak to a number of epidemiologists. In an interview with Seznam Zpravy, former Minister of Health Roman Prymula said that the current anti-epidemic system PES isn't set up well and will only get the country into trouble.

"As the measures have been relaxed, it is not possible to assume that we will reach values ​​of around a thousand cases a day. It may be a little miracle if we stay on the current numbers," Prymula told Seznam Zpravy.

The country has reported rising numbers for several days now. As a result, authorities have tightened some restrictions. Starting this evening, pubs, bars and restaurants must close by 8 p.m. Health Minister Jan Blatný has said it's because restaurants and bars have been abusing the window sales at night.

Since March, the Czech Republic has reported a total of 556,927 COVID-19 cases, the majority of which were reported in September and October. Of those, there have been 484,781 recoveries, with 63,110 known active cases.

The number of patients in hospitals has been steadily decreasing as well. There are currently 4,348 COVID-19 patients in Czech hospitals, with 582 of those in serious condition.

The country has reported 9,036 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

The most-affected region in the Czech Republic over the past two weeks by far continues to be Havlíčkův Brod, which has reported about 512 new cases per 100,000 residents over the past week.

The Czech Republic is no longer the most affected state in the EU; the country now ranks far below countries like Lithuania, Slovenia and Croatia, with about 511 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents, according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control.

Luxembourg has the worst COVID-19 situation in the EU right now with more than 1,100 cases per 100,000 in the past 14 days; Croatia is not far behind.

Germany has tightened restrictions for Czech residents who head to Germany to go shopping. Starting today, Czechs cannot cross the border to go shopping without quarantining for 10 days. The ban will last until January 5, 2021.

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