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Greece Introduces Hotel Doctors, Island Quarantine Areas as Covid-19 Precautions

Hotels operating in Greece this summer will be required to have a doctor on call and designated quarantine areas will be set up on popular island destinations as the country prepares to open up to international tourists on June 15, in the aftermath of the coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis.

Greek Tourism Minister Harry Theoharis outlined this week the precautionary plan, which is part of the government’s “Restart Tourism” strategy announced on Wednesday by Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.

According to Theoharis, the preventative measures aimed at ensuring safety for visitors, hotel professionals and destinations, is two pronged: resort facilities will be manned by a medical doctor responsible for conducting Covid-19 tests and a health coordinator who will be in contact with the General Secretariat for Civil Protection; and secondly, special quarantine areas will be set up in case of suspected or positive coronavirus cases, and there will be available transport options to the nearest medical facility if needed.

For the smaller island destinations, Theoharis said specific plans have been drawn up that include the placement of 20 new analysts for Covid-19 tests and the addition of 600 intensive care beds.

Theoharis said the measures were aimed at enhancing coronavirus case surveillance and management at holiday destinations.

Ithaki. Photo © Maria Theofanopoulou

Greece is set to open its year-round hotels, campgrounds and camps on June 1, initially for domestic travelers and then will welcome visitors from abroad from June 15 as Athens Airport begins to accept incoming flights from countries with a positive Covid-19 track record. As of July 1, all Greek airports will be operational to international flights. It is noted that Greece’s seasonal hotels will open on June 15.

EU nationals traveling to Greece will not be required to take a Covid-19 screening test nor will they be quarantined, but Theoharis did add that sample testing will be carried out on a regular basis.

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About the Author
Chicago-born and raised, Maria Paravantes has over two decades of journalistic experience covering tourism and travel, gastronomy, arts, music and culture, economy and finance, politics, health and social issues for international press and media. She has worked for Reuters, The Telegraph, Huffington Post, Billboard Magazine, Time Out Athens, the Athens News, Odyssey Magazine and, among others. She has also served as Special Advisor to Greece’s minister of Foreign Affairs, and to the mayor of Athens on international press and media issues. Maria is currently a reporter, content and features writer for GTP Headlines.

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