Something of an emergency has taken place in Greece as the country recorded over 2,000 cases of COVID-19 in the last 24 hours, 1,820 new cases of the coronavirus on Wednesday, and 1,797 cases recorded on Tuesday. The latest news of an emergency nature tells of 14 passengers on a boat from the Aegean island of Ios having tested positive for coronavirus. Many are questioning the alleged safeguards authorities reported putting in place.
Officials say that only eight of Wednesday’s total cases were identified during routine Covid-19 testing of tourists at the country’s borders. However, many citizens question the credibility of these statements since reports that some official checkpoints were doing everything in their power to pass through travelers. The Ios infections spur the question, “If the protocols in place are so effective, how can so many passengers test positive?” Clearly, there are big holes in the system.
Of the patients who have been reported recently, some 159 are on ventilators in Greece, nine fewer than the number of patients undergoing the invasive treatment on Tuesday. 9 people also died in the 24 hour period from ending on Wednesday.
Officials announced a clampdown on outdoor venues on Tuesday, and restaurants, bars, clubs, and entertainment venues will only allow seated customers as of today.
Deputy Minister for Civil Protection & Crisis Management Nikos Hardalias held a short emergency briefing telling attendees that the average age of new coronavirus infections in the last 10 days is down to 27. Citing National Public Health Organization (EODY) statistics, Hardalias targeted outdoor venues as a possible key source of infections.
Here on Crete, 70 cases of the coronavirus have been diagnosed in Heraklion, and 69 in Rethymno, both located in Crete, where the Delta variant has already begun to spread.
Reuters reported earlier this week Greek officials said the government would not close the economy again because of the pandemic if it was just to protect an unvaccinated minority.
On a local note, our editor is still awaiting notification she can get her first vaccine shot, and our editor-in-chief still has one shot to go after months of attempting to obtain the COVID jabs. The system simply does not function as officials say it does.
Many expats in Greece, and people in areas like Crete, have not received the assistance they need to get protected. Greek officials opted to fully immunize remote islands first, leaving thousands of at-risk individuals on the mainland and in Crete vulnerable. And now a more transmissible variant has taken hold in Crete and in parts of the rest of Greece.