A number of Covid-19 restrictions will be lifted in Greece, allowing standing customers at bars, clubs and cafes, full-house conferences and events, and a 50 percent capacity at sports events starting on Saturday, February 19, Health Minister Thanos Plevris announced on Thursday.
Plevris announced the news after a meeting on Wednesday of the country’s Covid experts committee who also decided to allow school field-trips as of March 1 and reduce remote work in the public and private sector to 20 percent.
The minister said Greece decided to follow the example of other EU governments and gradually lift restrictions by the end of March.
The committee however ruled against Carnival parades for a third year in a row, but gave the green light to monitored events in closed spaces. Health experts also insisted that mask wearing indoors and outside should continue to be mandatory.
In an interview to SKAI television, Plevris stressed that there was no room for complacency, adding that “we must be prepared for a possible resurgence of the pandemic in the fall”.
The minister warned that the pandemic was far from over. He also confirmed that the vaccination rate of the general adult population in Greece was over 81 percent and that despite a gradual de-escalation of Covid-19, the national health system was still under pressure.
Meanwhile, Greek health experts said that a fourth dose of vaccination against the coronavirus is currently being examined for vulnerable groups only.
Greece’s public health organization EODY reported 19,509 new coronavirus cases in the last 24-hour period and 82 deaths.