“The government has just approved comprehensive preventive testing with antigenic tests in residential social services. The tests will be purchased by Všeobecná zdravotní pojišťovna. They are fast, affordable and any positivity will be confirmed by a PCR test,” said Minister of Labor and Social Affairs Jana Maláčová (CSSD).
Comprehensive testing will not be mandatory. “We are on the path of voluntary testing,” said Health Minister Roman Prymula (for YES). It is aimed first at 80-100 thousand clients of social facilities, such as homes for the elderly, and the same number of staff who take care of them. Thus, roughly 200,000 people currently concern comprehensive testing.
“We will also test medical facilities. We also communicate with the Chamber of Commerce, we are trying to set up testing in companies. They would co-finance,” added Prymula.
At the meeting, the government also agreed to ask the Chamber of Deputies to extend the state of emergency, which has so far been valid in the Czech Republic from 5 October to 3 November. If Members agree to an extension, it will be valid until 3 December.
This year, the government announced it for the second time. The Cabinet may extend the state of emergency only with the prior approval of the deputy. They must discuss the government’s proposal by Friday, October 30 at the latest.
At a press conference, the Minister of Health also announced that the pupils would definitely not return to school on 2 November. On Friday, the government should announce a date when the children could return. According to Prymula, the numbers are still not falling and it depends on what the increases will be during this week. “But we cannot announce on Friday that schools will reopen on Monday,” he explained.
The state of emergency allows legislators to introduce stricter measures, including blanket measures, which under normal circumstances cannot be put into practice immediately. Many politicians have acknowledged in their statements that the government cannot do without prolonging the state of emergency.
The government may declare a state of emergency for 30 days and for a specific territory. With the end of the state of emergency, the crisis measures also expire – if the cabinet wants to keep them, their enactment must be discussed.
The new measures announced by the government at Monday’s press conference will come into force on Wednesday. You can see the whole record here: