The EU’s most-vaccinated nations are doing everything they can to stem the epidemic.
The Portuguese government announced Thursday that it would tighten COVID-19 regulations, including tighter border controls, to help countries in the European Union who are least vaccinated, face the rising number of infections.
Premier Minister Antonio Costa stated: “Despite the success vaccination…we must realize that this is a high risk phase because we see pandemics throughout Europe, and Portugal’s not an island.”
On December 1, he announced the restoration of the “disaster status” that was lifted four months earlier.
The new regulations require that all passengers traveling to Portugal undergo a negative inspection before they board. Failure to do so will result in a fine of 20,000 Euros per passenger.
When entering restaurants, hotels, gyms, or cultural events, you must present a vaccination certificate. Indoor public places will need to be worn masks again; those visiting nursing homes, hospitals and bars must undergo a negative test.
Costa stated that remote work would be required for the “containment Week” beginning on January 2. Bars will be closed and school holidays extended in order to stop the spread of the holiday season.
Portugal’s infection rate is lower than those in northern and eastern countries that have been most severely affected by the current pandemic. Portugal boasts a population of more than 87% who are vaccinated.
However, infections have also increased sharply over the past month. Portugal had 3,773 coronavirus new cases on Wednesday, its highest number since June.
Aside from the new restrictions, authorities are increasing the distribution of booster shot to immunized people.
Antonio Lacerda Zelda, Health Minister, stated Wednesday that more than 850,000 people in a country with 10.3 million inhabitants have had the booster injection. 2.5 million people should have had the booster injection by January.