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Covid-19 in Bulgaria: Day 121

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Emergency epidemic situation in Bulgaria extended until end of July

The emergency epidemic situation is extended by two weeks in order to slow down the spread of the virus, Health Minister Kiril Ananiev said. Mass control of the observance of anti-epidemic measures is being reinforced and regional health inspectorates could enforce stricter measures if necessary. Mass events are being brought down to a minimum. It is yet to be decided which football matches will be played without audience as 25 players of the teams of Cherno More and 4 of Tsarsko Selo tested positive for coronavirus. A list of countries from the EU, as well as third countries, whose citizens will be able to enter Bulgaria with and without quarantine, is also to be made public.

Less people infected in past day

63 new Covid-19 cases have been registered in Bulgaria out of 923 PCR tests performed over the past 24 hours, official national information system statistics show.This brings the total number of people infected with coronavirus in the country up to 5,740. 5 people have died over the past 24 hours, bringing the death toll to 246. 17 have recovered over the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of recoveries up to 2,915. The record for biggest number of newly registered coronavirus cases is still held by Sofia 23, followed by Kyustendil – 9. The total number of coronavirus cases so far has reached 5740.

Quarantine does not end with negative test

Quarantine begins on the day of the last contact with the confirmed Covid-19 case. The duration is connected with the incubation period. That is the opinion of the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, attorney Maria Sharkova told the BNR.A negative PCR test result of the quarantined individual does not suspend the order of the health authorities for application of the restriction. If the result of the new PCR test is positive, then another 14 days of quarantine starts. The quarantine order can be appealed in court, but the procedure is also 14 days.

Young people get infected because they do not comply with measures

“Prime Minister Boyko Borissov is right in his unwillingness to impose stricter measures against the spread of the Covid-19 infection. A European study shows that people do not believe the coronavirus is so contagious and are not inclined to comply with the measures,” Prof. Dr. Asen Baltov, director of Pirogov emergency hospital told BNT. “Proms were allowed, going to night clubs was allowed, going to bars, to restaurants, places older people are afraid to go to. That is why it is only natural for more young people to get sick because they do not comply with the measures,” Prof. Baltov added.

Four of the basic mutations of Covid-19 circulate in Bulgaria

There are more than 7 Covid-19 genetic lines circulating in the world, Assoc. Prof. Ivan Ivanov, head of the National Reference Laboratory "Control and Monitoring of Antimicrobial Resistance” said. The most widespread in Bulgaria is the line which is predominant in Europe and USA.There are 3 more genetic lines circulating in the country. One of them is the original one from Wuhan”. Virologist Assoc. Prof. Ivailo Alexiev quotes a study, according to which some coronavirus strains build up immunity, whereas others do not. He does not expect the circulation of different Covid-19 mutations to change with every passing year. 

Bulgarian scientific team is close to creating medicine against Covid-19

Tests of a Bulgarian drug show it may be effective in the treatment of patients with coronavirus, the director of the Bulgarian Drug Agency, Bogdan Kirilov, said. The team is entirely Bulgarian and 30 patients have already been recruited in 9 hospitals to test Ivermectin. Results are expected at the end of July or beginning of August.

Economic decline because of Covid-19

The industrial production index, turnover in retail trade and exports have marked a considerable drop in April, compared to the same month of 2019. April is the first full month of lockdown in the country, which explains the 19.9% drop in trade turnover, the National Statistical Institute says. The industrial production index is down by 15.7%. The balance of trade for April, 2020 is positive, amounting to EUR 120 million, whereas in April 2019 there was a EUR 222 million deficit. However, exports for the country as a whole have shrunk by 18%.

Reorganization at borders in order to facilitate passage of heavy trucks

The issue was discussed at a meeting between Minister of Transport Rosen Zhelyazkov and representatives of the transport business, which was severely affected by the coronavirus crisis. The industry's concerns are related to the formation of long queues of trucks at the Bulgarian borders. It was agreed that responsible institutions should reorganize and optimize inspections carried out at the border checkpoints, related to the observance of the traffic rules, as well as to the payment of traveled distance.

You can find all stories and important publications related to COVID-19 in Bulgaria at our special coverage section in English.

You can also follow all latest updates on the coronavirus outbreak and all measures in Bulgaria in 9 more languages at Radio Bulgaria.

Compiled by: Diana Tsankova

Editor: Kr. Martinov

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