Outgoing Czech health minister's successor to be appointed by president Zeman today

Jan Blatný, a prominent hematologist, will replace Roman Prymula as the next Czech Minister of Health

ČTK

Written by ČTK
Published on 29.10.2020 10:45 (updated on 29.10.2020)

Jan Blatný, a prominent hematologist, will be appointed health minister by Czech president Miloš Zeman on Thursday, October 29, at noon at the president’s Lány Castle residence.

Blatný will replace outgoing minister Roman Prymula who resigned the post after just 38 days after a series of photos released by a Czech tabloid showed him exiting a restaurant late last Wednesday without a face mask on.

Blatný, 50, is a physician specializing in pediatric hematology. He is deputy director at the Brno Teaching Hospital. He met with the president at Lány on Tuesday afternoon.

Czech prime minister Babiš told Czech Television that continuity is needed at the Health Ministry. "I definitely do not expect him to change anything essential," Babiš said, referring to Blatný’s appointment. 

"He is well-versed in the [epidemic] issue, he is a physician, has the experience, and the foreign language proficiency. I am convinced that he will manage the post well," Babiš said.

Blatný, the former Chief Physician at the Faculty Hospital in Brno and lecturer at the Medical Faculty of the Masaryk University in Brno, faced controversy during the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic from the Czech NGO League of Human Rights for not allowing parents to visit their coronavirus-infected children.

 Blatný’s international colleagues took to Twitter to congratulate him today.

Reports are also circulating of a fake Blatný account on Twitter, however, the Ministry of Health told iDnes.cz that it is not an official account.

"The only official twitter accounts maintained by the Ministry of Health are the accounts of the Ministry of Health, ZdrávkoOnline, and Roman Prymula. The ministry does not manage any other accounts," Jan Brodský, a ministry spokesman said.

Babiš will attend the ceremony at 12:00 which will be followed by a Blatný's first press conference shortly after 1 pm in Prague.