Situation Reports Portugal

Situation Reports will be updated daily or more frequently if the situation necessitates this. Information about our sources here.

 

Portugal Report is compiled by David Thomas with input from Ramiro Martinez, Rolf Burckhardt, Daniel Fernandes (Madeira). Overseas report compiled by Louise Birch. Website posting by Elise, Jennie Kelly and David Thomas

 

Situation Reports Portugal 2020-05-21 to 2020-06-13

Situation Reports Portugal 2020-04-06 to 2020-05-10

Situation Reports Portugal 2020-03-16 to 2020-04-05

Previous – links at the foot of this page.

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Situation Reports this week

Portugal Situation Report Monday 3rd August 2020

Introduction

Good morning – The emphasis today is not so much on Covid-19, but on rural fires. The National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority (ANEPC) have placed the districts of Santarém and Faro on alert of red-level readiness, due to the increased risk of rural fires. In addition the whole of mainland Portugal is at a Situation of Alert, which allows the ANEPC to introduce special measures to help protect the population against rural fires given the extreme weather conditions.

“The scenario is not good, particularly in Santarem and Faro Districts, (the Algarve) with a  very severe weather picture over the next two days, with increased wind speeds both during the day and night”.

The government has appealed to population to undertake no activities, including the burning of debris that could cause “any ignition”. Yellow alerts are in the districts of Porto, Braga and Viana do Castelo and orange alerts for the remaining districts of mainland Portugal. Please ensure to read the Rural Fire warning issued last night https://www.safecommunitiesportugal.com/current-anpc-weather-warning-to-the-population-2/

Earlier yesterday we posted information concerning high risk parishes, of which there are 1144 throughout the country. It is essential that everyone is aware of the self-protections measures especially if you live in one of these. The list can be downloaded here. https://dre.pt/application/conteudo/129577185

Your life and those of others may depend on what to do if a fire approaches your home so please check here. https://www.safecommunitiesportugal.com/during-fires/

As far as Covid-19 is concerned we are placing emphasis on Portugal as a safe destination for tourists. I was on KissFm yesterday delivering this key message. I explained that it is not just about figures that determines the risk, but how Portugal is currently handling the pandemic which reduced the risk not only to residents, but tourists as well.

This was further emphasised by an excellent SCooP post on our Facebook page by Elise Slotte, entitled Welcome to Portugal, which has so far reached nearly 20,000 people and over 100 shares, with very positive responses. An excellent example on how to get serious messages across in a “fun” way. Well done Elise.

So on a Happy note have a Very Safe Day by following the Rural fire safety advice.

Covid-19 DGS Situation Report

Portugal registered yesterday one more dead and 153 new cases of infection by covid-19 in relation to Saturday, according to the daily bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS).

According to the DGS epidemiological situation report, since the beginning of the pandemic up until today, there have been 51,463 confirmed cases of infection and 1,738 deaths.

The region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, where there are still more active outbreaks of covid-19, yesterday totalling 25,323 cases to date, 92 more than the day before, which represents 60.1% of new infections.

In percentage terms, in the last 24 hours, the increase in deaths was 0.05% (from 1,737 to 1,738) and that of confirmed cases was 0.29% (from 51,310 to 51,463).

In number of cases, the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo region leads, with 26,323, followed by the North region (18,780, plus 38 cases), the Center region (4,455, six new cases). The Alentejo has seven more cases (743) and the Algarve another eight (887).

Health

Moura – Suspension of visits to care homes extended

The Civil Protection of Moura (Beja) has decided to extend the suspension of visits to users in the county’s care homes for another 15 days, where there are 46 active cases of covid-19 and one dead, he informed today the municipality.

The preventive measure was decided after analysing, with the private institutions of social solidarity (IPSS), the evolution of the number of cases of infection by the new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 in the Alentejo region and especially in the municipality of Moura, says a statement released today by the chamber.

The decision, according to the municipality, aims to “safeguard the safety and health of the most vulnerable population” to covid-19.

“After the end of this new period of suspension, the epidemiological situation will be reassessed in order to adopt the measures that are deemed most appropriate with regard to the resumption of the usual visits to users of IPSS”, reads the statement.

Visits to users of Moura’s homes have been suspended since the 6th of July.

In this Alentejo municipality, there is an outbreak of covid-19 in the village of Póvoa de S. Miguel, where last Friday the first mortal victim, an 85-year-old man, was registered.

The elderly gentleman sadly died at his home, the first death by covid-19 recorded in the municipality of Moura.

The coordinator of the Municipal Civil Protection Service, Diogo Saraiva, said that in this municipality of Baixo Alentejo, 46 ​​cases of covid-19 remained active on Saturday, 30 of which in Póvoa de São Miguel, 10 in Amareleja and six in Moura.

DGS denies claim by Order of Doctors that Portugal will reduce the number of tests

The Order of Doctors warned this Saturday that the DGS rule on the tracking of contacts by covid-19 may contribute to an increase in cases, because it is no longer mandatory to carry out tests on high-risk contacts with infected people.

The position of the OM appears on the day that Expresso newspaper reports that “high-risk contacts are no longer tested” with this rule, a situation that the Directorate-General for Health has already denied in a statement.

The Directorate-General for Health (DGS) clarified this Saturday that Portugal will not reduce testing to covid-19, limiting analyses to secondary cases and outbreak situations, as reported in the weekly Expresso.

In a note sent to the newsrooms, DGS assured that it will not reduce “conducting tests to confirmed case contacts”, thus contradicting the headline in the weekly Expresso, which reports the existence of a new testing standard that no longer requires conducting analyses of high-risk contacts.

As explained by DGS, the document only “formalizes procedures already carried out”. “It is not true, therefore, that Portugal will reduce the number of tests, as stated by the newspaper. Nor is it true that the rule in question excludes or restricts the universe of people subject to testing,” the statement said.

“Much less is it true that any WHO indications are being violated. On the contrary, the Portuguese health authorities remain firmly committed to the application of the ‘test, test, test’ strategy, which has already led to the achievement in Portugal of more 1.6 million laboratory tests for SARS-CoV-2 “, adds DGS.

Phone calls by the Center’s Health Administration are not “false” after all

The Regional Health Administration of the Center clarified  that calls for breast cancer screening are in fact being made by telephone, and are not, as the entity had warned on Thursday, “false calls”.

The Regional Health Administration of the Center (ARSC) warned on Thursday of “false calls being made on behalf of this public institute”, regarding “breast cancer screening”.

In a note sent to the Lusa agency, the ARSC clarifies that, after all, these calls are not fake, but calls by phone by the health administration, instead of the usual letter, for breast cancer screening, which were resumed in June.

In Thursday’s alert, ARSC “stated that the call for screening was not carried out by telephone, which, in fact, does not correspond to reality”.

“Due to the pandemic, the call for breast cancer screening, under the responsibility of ARSC and the Regional Center of the Portuguese League Against Cancer Center (NRC-LPCC), is now carried out provisionally and in articulation between the two entities , via phone and as long as the pandemic circumstances advise, “ARSC clarified this Friday.

In the same note, the ARSC states that, in order to distinguish the call from the NRC-LPCC, “it is informed that the content of the call only gives indications about procedures related to the covid-19 security protocol and transmits the date to the user, time and place of mammography “.

Region Reports

Madeira

Covid-19 update

There were 2 new Covid-19 cases on Saturday and 3 new cases on Sunday. The 3 cases from yesterday are from 3 tourists who had arrived from Switzerland. They had already been in isolation and under monitoring after a member of the group had tested positive on arrival last week. And 7 travellers are under epidemiological investigations and analysis after screening at Funchal Airport.

In more positive news, a patient who had arrived in Madeira and who had been in isolation in a designated hotel has recovered. So far, there have been 111 cases, 98 recoveries and 13 active cases. Ten of the active cases were imported and identified through screening at Funchal Airport, while the other 3 active cases were a result of a local transmission chain. And 8 patients are in isolation in a designated hotel while 5 are in isolation in a temporary home.

There are 6,467 people under active monitoring and 8,413 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of Saturday, there had been 1,570 suspected cases, of which 1,459 were not confirmed.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal and Porto Santo airports, 17,794 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 18h00). Overall, 45,654 samples have been processed in the Autonomous Region of Madeira.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 113 calls from Friday to Sunday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 10,424.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,811 calls, with 160 people being monitored.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/100260/Covid-19_Dois_novos_casos_identificados_na_Madeira

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/08/02/mais-3-casos-de-covid-19-na-ram-outros-sete-casos-suspeitos-sob-investigacao/

President of the Madeira Regional Government does not believe mandatory use of masks will deter visitors to Madeira

Miguel Albuquerque, the President of the Madeira Regional Government, acknowledged the use of a face mask is “boring” but he does not believe its mandatory use in public places will deter visitors from coming to Madeira. Although he was aware this policy would be controversial, he believes it is preferable to have this policy in place than to face transmission chains and uncontrollable situations.

He reinforced this by highlighting two crucial developments coming up. The first is connected to the pandemic situation in countries such as Spain, France and Germany, which is “reaching alarming levels”. Madeira will be very exposed to tourists from these countries. The second is the reopening of schools and nurseries in the first fortnight of September. He said there will be 43,000 students and 6,000 teachers  which will mean more gatherings and a greater risk of transmission. Furthermore, the Region is expecting the arrival of 70,000 tourists in August and 80,000 in September.

 

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/100155/_Nao_acredito_que_ninguem_deixe_de_vir_a_Madeira_por_causa_do_uso_da_mascara

Return of Jet2 to is a “happy day to Madeira”

Eduardo Jesus, the Madeira Tourism Secretary, was very pleased with the return of Jet2 flights to Madeira after several months without any. Jet2 is the biggest British tourism operator to Madeira and today it will carry hundreds of people though several flights to the archipelago. He said this is happening despite the quarantine requirements for tourists when returning to the UK. He added that Jet2 had managed to motivate a large number of tourists who believe Madeira is a safe destination and who are still willing to come to Madeira on holiday, even if it means being in quarantine after their return. He believes Jet2 and the British market have shown great trust in Madeira due to the policies adopted by the Regional Government to ensure it is a safe destination and to the “exemplary control of the pandemic” in the Region. He finished by saying “the recovery is underway” and “it is necessary to believe and to use these positive news” to motivate the entire tourism industry.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/100310/Regresso_da_companhia_aerea_Jet2_e_um_dia_feliz_para_a_Madeira_diz_Eduardo_Jesus

Roadworks at Via Rápida (VR1)

The exit road of VR1 at junction 18 (nó 18 – Gaula– marked in red on the map), heading from Funchal towards Ribeira Brava, will be closed to traffic due to scheduled work on the road pavement, from August 4th (10h00) to August 5th (02h00).

As a diversion, Vialitoral suggests drivers exit at the previous junction (junction 19 – Boaventura) or at the following junction (junction 17 – Porto Novo). Vialitoral asked drivers to comply with all existing road signs. All similar information is available and constantly updated on the following website:

www.vialitoral.com

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/100162/Vialitoral_encerra_saida_da_via_rapida_em_Gaula_no_sentido_Funchal_-_Ribeira_Brava

Water supply disruptions

There will be water supply disruptions tomorrow due to scheduled work on the water supply chain to prevent water leaks. The disruptions will affect the following areas:

Municipality of Câmara de Lobos – Vila, Pé do Pico and Espírito Santo (09h00 to 12h00)

Municipality of Santana – Corrida, Curral Velho, Fonte da Pedra, Lombo de Antão Alves, Pico, Pinheiro, Serra de Água, Silveira and Serrado (14h00 to 18h00)

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/100178/Abastecimento_de_agua_afetado_em_Camara_de_Lobos_a_4_de_agosto

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/100180/Remodelacao_na_rede_deixa_Santana_sem_agua_em_varios_sitios_na_proxima_terca-feira

Power cut

Empresa de Electricidade da Madeira (Madeira power supplier) announced there will be power cuts in the following days, due to planned work on the electricity supply network. The following areas will be affected:

 

 

 

FUNCHAL

4th August – 09h00 to 11h30

– Calçada da Cabouqueira (numbers 17, 21, 62, 64, 76 and 80

5th August – 09h00 to 11h30 & 14h00 to 16h00

– Rua do Lazareto (number 239)

– Beco do Ribeiro Seco (São Gonçalo)

5th and 6th August – 09h00 to 11h30 & 14h00 to 16h00

– Rua dos Álamos (numbers 3 and 5)

6th August – 09h00 to 12h00

– Rua Nova da Igreja (S. Gonçalo) & Rua Prof. Modesto Trindade

– Beco do Carteiro

– Travessa Pedra Mole

– Calçada do Pico (numbers 12 and 14)

CAMPANÁRIO

4th August – 09h00 to 11h30

– Caminho da Pedra de Nossa Senhora & Caminho da Gloria

– Ribeiro dos Melões (including Via Litoral)

– Vigia (partial)

4th August – 09h30 to 09h45 & 16h00 to 16h15

– Chamorra de Baixo, Cima e Porta Nova

ARCO DA CALHETA

5th August – 09h30 to 11h30

– Faias

CALHETA

5th August – 09h30

– Pico Atouguia

SÃO VICENTE

5th August – 09h00 to 09h30 & 17h00 to 17h30

– Ginjas, Miradouro (Ginjas) and Parque Empresarial de São Vicente

However, power could be restored during the time frame mentioned above. So, for safety purposes, it should be assumed that there will be power at any time during this period of time.

If necessary, customers can contact the free Customer Support Service (Serviço de Apoio ao Cliente): 800 221 187.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/08/01/publicidade-o-fornecimento-de-energia-sera-interrompido-nos-dias-horas-e-locais-abaixo-indicados-anuncio-57-2020/

Algarve

Rural Fires – Faro District at Red Alert

The National Authority for Emergency and Civil Protection (ANEPC) placed the districts of Santarém and Faro on alert of red level readiness, due to the increased risk of fire, and called for the care of the populations.

“We are going to have a very severe weather picture with an increase in wind speed. In the next two days we will have a very strong wind, not only during the day, but also at night, and with reduced recovery of the moisture retained during the night,” said Miguel Cruz, district grouping commander, at a press conference at ANEPC headquarters in Carnaxide.

“In this light, the appeal is to avoid any activity that could cause any ignition,” said the official, adding that the special red alert status for districts has been determined”.

Special alert states determine the degree of readiness for fire-fighting means to respond.

In yellow alert are the districts of Porto, Braga and Viana do Castelo and in orange alert the remaining districts of mainland Portugal.

Mainland Portugal will enter an Alert Situation yesterday at 20.00 hrs until the 4th, in view of the forecast of “a significant increase in the risk of rural fire”, the Government announced yesterday.

All details have been posted on the Safe Communities Portugal Facebook page

Shark sighted Tavira

The alleged sighting by people of a shark on Terra Estreita beach, in Tavira, Algarve, led, on Sunday afternoon, to the raising of the red flag in three beaches for about an hour and a half. During this period, a water scooter travelled the coast, but found no sight of the shark.

Rui Andrade, Commander of the Captaincy of Tavira, said that the alert was given by the lifeguard from Terra Estreita beach, located in Santa Luzia, Tavira, at about 13.20 hours, following reports by bathers who said they had seen a shark approaching the coast.

“In order to safeguard the integrity of the people, as always happens in these cases, we ordered the flag to be hoisted on three beaches, Terra Estreita, Barril and Ilha de Tavira. Then, the area was covered by a personal watercraft, but there were no sightings”.

The occurrence concluded at about 14.45 hours, when the green flag was raised again and bathers on the three beaches were able to return to the water.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 2nd August – 3rd August 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores 

The Regional Health Authority has reported that, after 1,101 tests carried out by the two reference laboratories in the Region in the last 24 hours, a positive case of COVID-19 on the island of São Miguel has been diagnosed.

The case refers is a 25-year-old woman who is not resident in the Azores and arrived in the Region from by air from the Continent on August 1st, she tested positive for the SARS-CoV- virus when she arrived.

She is in a stable clinical condition and the procedures defined for confirmed cases, testing and surveillance of close contacts have already been taken care of by the Municipal Health Delegation.

There has also been a recovery, a 65-year-old man who landed in the Region, on Terceira Island, on July 14th.

In summary, 175 cases of infection with the new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19 disease, have been detected in the Region, and there are currently 16 active positive cases, all of them on the island of São Miguel.

 

 

Saturday 1st August

Introduction

Good morning – The main news item yesterday was the train accident at Soure Coimbra involving an AP train colliding with a railway maintenance train.

At the time of writing two maintenance workers died, six people were injured and 19 treated for minor injuries – it could have been a lot worse with over 200 people on board the AP.

An investigation into the accident will take place, with I would imagine the focus being why the maintenance vehicle was on the same track as the AP. The emergency services responded very quickly and treatment and psychological support was given to victims which included children. Safe Communities Portugal has acted as observers in the exercises regularly undertaken by civil protection and it’s agents in responding to all sorts on accidents, including the type experienced yesterday. They are very well practiced. Our condolences to the families and friends of those who died.

Regarding Covid-19, the speculation that there would be a weekly review to consider including Portugal on the travel corridor proved not to be the case. There are data reviews conducted weekly, but the full risk assessment is not due to 21st August. Whether or not the case for Portugal will be reviewed in the interim is not known.

However in the last week, Luxemburg and Spain (the latter which had over 1500 confirmed new cases yesterday) have been removed from the travel corridor because of the risk, and five countries have been added. We will need to wait and see and hope that the number of confirmed cases that have recently decreasing are sustainable. What is fundamental in achieving this is respecting the rules on social distancing, proper hygiene measures and wearing face masks where required.

Under the new Situation of Alert, which was extended yesterday by the Council of Ministers affective midnight last night the maximum group gatherings remain at 20 throughout mainland Portugal except in the Lisbon Metropolitan area, where for all municipalities it is now 10. A reminder that the Situation of Calamity in the 19 parishes in the Lisbon Metropolitan area has now been downgraded to a Situation of Contingency.

An important announcement yesterday was by the President of the Republic Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa of the existence of a specific plan to support the Algarve adding this is a “national priority”. “There is no other region in the country that depends so much on tourism, a sector that hit the bottom,” he said. This is very true as anyone in the tourism industry will know from hoteliers, local lodging tour operators, restaurants and every business that deals with tourists.

The economy must be revived as soon as possible. In this respect much depends on the country being added to the UK’s travel corridor. Even if this does take place, however, there will be a need to regain confidence in air travel, as safe travel and safe destinations go hand in hand. In this respect Portugal, including the Algarve, in the view of Safe Communities is a safe destination.

Yesterday we held our General Meeting with some new faces being elected to our management board, in the form of Louise Birch, who writes the excellent daily overseas report and Eliana Taveras from Porto who administers our Facebook page and does super quick translations on many of our Facebook posts. I remain as President, with Chris Stretton, Lilia Martins and Jim Litchko our Cyber Security expert, re-elected as members. Elise Slotte is officially appointed as an Advisor along with Louise Baker and Jennie Kelly who help with our Facebook and website respectively. This will further strengthen our quality of service to the community. Well deserved to you all.

With that Happy note I wish you all a very Safe Weekend.

Covid-19 Statistics

Portugal yesterday registers eight more deaths and 204 new cases of infection by covid-19 in relation to Thursday, according to the daily bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS).

According to the DGS epidemiological situation report, since the beginning of the pandemic until yesterday, there have been 51,072 confirmed cases of infection and 1,735 deaths.

The Lisbon and Vale do Tejo region, where there are still more active outbreaks of covid-19, today totals 26,067 cases, 128 more than the day before.

Health

More than half of the infected users healed at the Reguengos de Monsaraz home

 More than half of the 80 home users of Reguengos de Monsaraz, in the Évora district, who were infected with covid-19 in the outbreak detected in June have now recovered, the Municipal Civil Protection stated yesterday. According to the last update of the county’s epidemiological bulletin, at the end of Thursday, there were 48 cases recovered among users of the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation (FMIVPS), 14 more than the previous day.

The outbreak at home left 18 people dead, including 16 users and a house worker until Thursday, as well as a man from the community. There are still 16 active cases to be registered among home users, four of them admitted to the Hospital do Espírito Santo de Évora (HESE), two of which in the intensive care unit (ICU). Of the 26 home care professionals who were infected, only two cases remain active (one death), both recovering in their homes.

SNS has treated 133 Patients with Remdesivir

The National Health Service (SNS) has already treated 133 patients with covid-19 with the drug Remdesivir since the beginning of the new coronavirus pandemic, the National Medicines Authority (Infarmed) announced today.

At the press conference on the evolution of the pandemic in the country, the president of Infarmed, Rui Santos Ivo, stated that the drug – subject to a conditional authorization from the European Medicines Agency (EMA) for the treatment of covid-19 in adults and adolescents over 12 years of age with pneumonia who need oxygen – is being distributed in a “special access” program.

“We have been able to ensure that the medicine is made available to patients for whom it has been prescribed. At the moment, 133 patients have been treated with remdesivir as of today in the NHS. In this context, it was announced today by the European Commission that additional quantities of the medicine will be made available”, he said.

The revelation of the president of Infarmed came in the wake of today’s announcement by the European Commission, in which it formalized a contract of 63 million euros with the pharmaceutical Gilead to ensure treatments with this antiviral in the European Union (EU). According to Rui Santos Ivo, the distribution among the different Member States will consider epidemiological criteria.

Covid-19: Tondela Laboratory will produce eight to 24,000 daily test kits

ALS Controlvet in Tondela today opened a unique laboratory in the country that will produce, “at least, eight thousand ‘kits’ per day” to carry out tests, in an investment of more than one million that will give autonomy to Portugal and still export.

“We are going to produce the components of the coronavirus detection kits, we are going to assemble the protection kits and we will also carry out the testing, so we have the complete cycle. In Europe there are only two companies and we are the third”, announced the general director of ALS Controlvet.

“We will not have the problems of the past again, of scarcity or lack of product in which we have to buy at very high prices (…) With one shift, in the worst scenario, more conservative and less efficient, in eight hours we produce eight thousand tests” said João Cotta.

In case there is a need, he added, “we multiply for three shifts, which gives a daily capacity of 24 thousand tests” and, in the case of a laboratory that belongs to a multinational “that is in 70 countries, there is obviously a market automatic export”. “In the same way that during the pandemic we were more limited, because large companies diverted the components to more powerful countries, we will do the opposite. We will retain in Portugal what Portugal needs and the rest will export”, he said.

The first kits start to be produced “in the second half of August,” said João Cota, who explained that, after the various licensing stages have been passed, “and running smoothly, the goal is to be able to introduce them into the market in October”. The investment is over one million euros, with a 95% share of European funds, “because it was a project that was completed in two months”, explained João Cotta.

Food Aid Requests Rise

The economic consequences of the pandemic are leading many families to ask for food support, with a change in the social standard of those who receive support, with “ashamed needs” among the middle class, according to institutions that are on the ground.

Cristina, 25, found herself at the center of the pandemic, with her baby son, having to face a cut in wages in half, which forced her to resort to the help of Refood, a voluntary movement that collects and distributes food.

“I was alone with my son, I had the house and everything to pay and I had to get help, because I didn’t know what to do. I had to pay the 325 euros for the house, plus electricity, water and gas, plus food for my son and the nursery, so as not to lose the spot”, she said. Refood in Faro saw an increase “from 114 to 330” in the number of people it provides food aid, of which 96 are children, highlights the coordinator, Paula Matias, stressing that the numbers continue to rise.

Tourism

Survey Points to fear of Public Spaces and holiday cancellations

More than three quarters of respondents in a Deco study say they avoid public spaces for fear of contagion from covid-19, almost half cancelled their holiday programs and about half postponed projects and investments. According to the survey by the consumer protection association, which took place between 16 and 20 July, despite the reopening of most services and the return to work for part of the population, respondents continue to express fear of returning to the routines prior to the beginning of the crisis caused by the new coronavirus.

More than three quarters of the 1006 respondents ‘online’, between 18 and 74 years old, stated that they have avoided or even stopped using public spaces, such as restaurants, public transport or shopping centers, while more than half cancelled or postponed holidays and close half postponed projects initially scheduled for this year, such as buying a house or a new car. On the other hand, seven out of ten respondents reported the postponement of at least one scheduled health service and 22% said they were cancelled since the beginning of the pandemic.

“It is urgent that the health units reschedule these consultations, diagnostic exams and surgeries postponed or cancelled over the past few months, under penalty of seeing an increase in the mortality and morbidity rates due to the lack of follow-up by all non-covid patients.”, Concludes Deco, in the analysis of the survey. According to Deco, these are some of the collateral damages of covid-19 that lead to predicting serious consequences for the near future, with an increase in the rate of mortality and morbidities in the Portuguese population.

“We were never strong in economic Diplomacy

The president of the Confederation of Tourism of Portugal (CTP), Francisco Calheiros, said today that there were flaws “in economic diplomacy”, referring to the non-inclusion of Portugal in the tourist corridors of several countries, namely the United Kingdom.

“We have never been strong in economic diplomacy, and it costs us a lot to realize that more has not been done, namely with the British travel corridors, in terms of, specifically, the two regions to which they like to travel, Madeira and the Algarve where there have had extremely positive situations for quite a few days “, said Francisco Calheiros today after leaving a meeting in the Palace of Belém with the President of the Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa.

The president of CTP defended that Portugal should “attack, in a good way” the tourist markets of the countries that interest him most, like the British, “which is 30% of overnight stays in the Algarve” and the “best customer” in Portugal.

Francisco Calheiros considered “fundamental that Portugal regains its image of security that it always had” to be included in more tourist corridors that dispense quarantine on the return to the country where the tourists come from. “We cannot disarm, regardless of not having a big impact for the summer – the summer is lost – this image that we are not a safe country to come … we have to end it”, stressed the president of CTP.

Travel

Portugal not classified as a “Risk Country” in Galicia

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs today guaranteed that there is no “classification” of Portugal as a “risk country” by Galicia and that the registration decreed for Portuguese who visit the region “does not mean any restriction “to free movement.

“There is no classification of Portugal as a risk country by the Autonomous Community of Galicia. The communication mechanism established for citizens entering Galicia does not mean, nor could it mean, any restriction, impediment, conditioning to the free movement of Portuguese citizens, in the territory of this Autonomous Community of Spain “, says a statement sent today to the newsrooms. As published, on Tuesday, in the Official Gazette of Galicia, travellers from Portugal and five communities in northern Spain visiting Galicia will, as of Wednesday, have to register in which they provide the contacts.

The clarification advanced by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs results from a meeting, today held, between the Portuguese ambassador in Spain, João Mira Gomes, and the President of the Junta de Galicia, Alberto Nuñez Feijóo. At the meeting, the note adds, “it was possible, in an environment of frank friendship, to clarify all the points of the decision taken, on Tuesday, by the Junta de Galicia regarding the entry of Portuguese citizens in that Autonomous Community of Spain”.

Portuguese Who Refuse Testing on Arrival Incur Crime of Disobedience

Portuguese citizens or those residing in Portugal who arrive in the country without testing the covid-19 and refuse to perform it at the airport or in a laboratory within the next 48 hours incur the crime of disobedience, determined today the Government. This refers only to flights that involve the return of nationals, flights with humanitarian characteristics as well as flights originating from countries that have Portuguese as an official Portuguese language in which it is difficult to guarantee the performance of tests at origin.

The Minister of Internal Administration said today that it is mandatory to carry out a test on arrival in national territory for those who have not done so at the origin.

“If there is a refusal to carry out a test at the airport by nationals or citizens residing in Portugal, these passengers are notified to perform it within 48 hours at the laboratory that will be indicated at the airport itself,” said Eduardo Cabrita at a press conference after the Council of Ministers meeting. Failure to perform the test will be considered a “crime of disobedience” and the place of residence will be communicated to the authorities to verify that the test has been carried out and, in turn, “failure to perform the test incurs the assumptions of the crime of the spread of contagious disease” , he said.

New Rules for Air Travelers

The new rules for those traveling by plane to and from Portugal come into effect as of 00:00 on Saturday, August 1, have been announced today by the Government. According to a note from the Ministry of Internal Affairs, air traffic remains open with the countries that integrate the European Union, the countries associated with the Schengen Area (Liechtenstein, Norway, Iceland and Switzerland) and the United Kingdom.

The Government says it doubles the number of countries outside the European Union and the Schengen Area that may have regular air connections to and from Portugal because they present a positive epidemiological picture. The countries are as follows: Australia, Canada, China, South Korea, Georgia, Japan, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, Thailand, Tunisia and Uruguay.

The Minister of Internal Administration, Eduardo Cabrita, had already mentioned in the press conference after the meeting of the Council of Ministers today that flights to and from other destinations will be allowed only for essential trips.

“The authorization for essential travel was limited, so far, to flights originating in and to Portuguese-speaking countries and the USA”, says the MAI note issued after the press conference. Essential trips are those that allow “transit, entry or exit from Portugal to nationals of the EU or countries associated with the Schengen Area and their family members and foreigners legally resident in an EU Member State, as well as those carried out by professional, study, family reunion, health or humanitarian reasons ”, adds the note.

Covid-19: Contagions in Spain continue to increase and pass 1,500 daily

The number of new cases of daily contagion of covid-19 in Spain reached, in the last 24 hours, 1,525 cases, 296 more than the previous day, and maintains an upward trend, the Spanish Ministry of Health said today. According to local health authorities, the total number of infected since the beginning of the pandemic of the new coronavirus amounts to 285,522 and deaths to 28,445, 12 of them in the last seven days.

Aragon, with 511 new cases, Madrid (372), Basque Country (158) and Andalusia (107) are the communities that accumulate 75% of active cases. In Catalonia, where in the last few days the number of new cases has exceeded one hundred, it has decreased, with 64 infections.

Region Reports

Madeira Situation Report by Daniel Fernandes

Covid-19 update

There was a new Covid-19 case on the 29th of July, that of a traveller who had been tested at Funchal Airport. There are now 106 cases, with 9 active cases and 97 recoveries. Six active cases were imported and discovered as a result of monitoring at Funchal Airport while three were a result of a local transmission chain. There are 7 patients in isolation in a designated hotel and 2 in isolation at home. A suspected case was identified yesterday at Funchal Airport. An epidemiological investigation and lab analysis are being undertaken on the passenger.

There are 5,926 people under active monitoring and 7,720 people in self-monitoring. As for Covid-19 testing, 43,804 samples have been analysed at Laboratório de Patologia Clínica do SESARAM (Madeira Health Service lab).

A total of 16,108 samples had been collected at airports in Funchal and Porto Santo until yesterday (at 16h30). The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 163 calls from Tuesday to Friday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 10,311.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,797 calls, with 160 people being monitored.

https://covidmadeira.pt/situacao-epidemiologica-na-ram-atualizacao-31-07-2020/

Exemptions on the mandatory use of face masks in outdoor public places

From the 1st of August, face mask use in most outdoor public spaces will be mandatory. However, there are a few exemptions:

  1. a) Children up to 10 years old;
  2. b) Disabled people (who have trouble inserting and removing the mask without assistance);
  3. c) Practicing sports;
  4. d) Beaches, swimming resorts and access to the sea, with the exception of toilets, where face mask use is mandatory;
  5. e) For physical exercising or leisure activities that require physical effort;
  6. f) Leisure and sporting activities in forests and recommended pedestrian trails, while complying with social distancing rules.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/30/estas-sao-algumas-das-excecoes-ao-uso-da-mascara-na-madeira-a-partir-de-1-de-agosto/

A&E expansion will ensure a better response to an eventual second wave of Covid-19

Work is being carried out to expand the A&E department at Hospital Dr. Nélio Mendonça, in Funchal. Other departments at the hospital are also being expanded. Expansion work started in April and is expected to end in August, after an investment of €1,5M. The Madeira Regional Government is confident this will ensure the hospital is able to provide a better response if there is a second wave of Covid-19 infections.

Pedro Ramos, the Madeira Health and Civil Protection Secretary, highlighted there are an additional 14 beds and that this expansion comes at an important time. He said that, if required, the hospital will be able to deal with nearly 100 Covid-19 patients at the same time. He added that the contingency plan for the flu-season will start in September and will have special features as a result of the ongoing pandemic.

Regarding healthcare staff, Pedro Ramos said the Regional Government hired 1,528 professionals in the previous government term. He added that it plans to hire more than 600 professionals in the next term, with an annual quota of 150 professionals, and that this year’s quota has been nearly filled. He also reminded that there are nearly 100 healthcare and APM (Associação de Promoção da Madeira – Madeira Promotion Bureau) staff on a permanent basis in both of the Region’s airports to screen passengers arriving in the Region.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/100054/Covid-19_Ampliacao_das_urgencias_do_Funchal_permite_resposta_a_eventual_segunda_vaga

Flight frequencies at Madeira Airport to increase to 140 in August

The number of weekly frequencies at Madeira Airport (Funchal) is set to increase from 60 in July to 140 in August. Most visitors are Portuguese and European and there were also American visitors. The following airlines are planning to have flights to Madeira in August: TAP, easyJet, Transavia, Binter, Sata, Edelweiss Air, Jet Air Fly, Tui Fly, Jet 2, Smartwings, Lufthansa and British Airways.

Flights from Madeira to the following airports have been restored or will be restored: Lisbon, Porto, Paris, Amsterdam, Ponta Delgada (with connections to the USA), Canary Islands, Brussels, Zurich, Frankfurt, Dusseldorf, Prague and British airports including London, Manchester, Glasgow, Leeds, Edinburgh and East Midlands. It is hoped the increase in frequencies will lead to a greater number of visitors to the Autonomous Region of Madeira.

READ MORE HERE

July reopening of Madeira tourism exceeded all expectations

The July reopening of tourism in Madeira exceeded all expectations, with the arrival and departure of 46,000 travellers. So far, 72% of all hotel accommodation has reopened and it is hoped this will increase to 84% by the end of August. Other hotels are expected to reopen in September and in October and about 10 have no reopening date, due to building work or other decisions that are not related to the reopening.

Eduardo Jesus, the Madeira Tourism Secretary, argued that Madeira was “heavily punished” by the fact that several countries looked at national data as a whole and without distinguishing the Covid-19 situation in different regions. He added that Madeira made contact more than 80 times with the governments of the countries of origin of most tourists, in order to clarify and inform them of the real epidemiological situation in the Autonomous Region of Madeira.

He said Madeira performed very well, not only though its control of the pandemic but also though the fact it is the only Portuguese region not to have had any Covid-19 deaths. He highlighted this by reminding that there had been 90 cases and 1 or 2 active cases before Madeira’s reopening to tourism, while a month later, there have only been another 10 cases, which means the current measures are being successful.

He added that Madeira was the first tourist region in Portugal to implement a good practices manual, to start the process of certifying the sanitary safety of Madeira and to introduce screening on arrival at its airports. He finished by saying the mandatory use of face masks in public spaces is a culmination of Madeira’s reopening.

Bruna Gouveia, Vice-President of IASAÚDE (Institute of Administration of Health), informed it could soon be possible for samples to be collected at hotels in Porto Santo. This could happen as a result of an increase in the number of tourists to the golden island and will have to be carried out under the guidance of the health authorities.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/100142/Covid-19_Reabertura_do_turismo_na_Madeira_em_julho_superou_as_expectativas

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/100192/Covid-19_Hoteis_do_Porto_Santo_poderao_vir_a_fazer_colheitas

Water supply disruption

There will be a water supply disruption in the parish of Câmara de Lobos due to scheduled work on the water supply chain to prevent water leaks. The disruption will take place on the 4th of August, from 09h00 until 12h00, and will affect the following areas: Vila, Pé do Pico and Espírito Santo.

MORE INFORMATION HERE

 

Algarve

Covid 19 Situation

Yesterday, the Algarve region has 266 active cases and 583 people who have already recovered from the disease, according to the report of the District Civil Protection Commission of Faro.

The counties with the most active cases are Loulé (53), Albufeira (49) and Faro (43), while Castro Marim, Alcoutim and Vila do Bispo do not register any infection. The number of recovered people rose to 583, with a rate of 67.3%, lower than the previous week’s Situation Point.

In the Algarve hospitals 10 patients are hospitalized, five of them in intensive care and 93 have been discharged since the beginning of the pandemic, while 642 people are under active surveillance.

Regarding deaths, the Regional Health Authority, which provides the data to the District Civil Protection Commission of Faro, reveals that 17 people have already died from covid-19 in the region, although the Directorate-General for Health only registered 15. According to one source of the Regional Health Administration, these “two deaths occurred in the region, but people did not have residence in the Algarve”, he revealed to JA.

Marcelo says that specific plan to support the Algarve is a “national priority

The existence of a specific plan to support the Algarve is a “national priority”, this Friday, July 31, defended the President of the Republic, after a meeting with business associations in the region, in Tavira.

At the end of this hearing, at the Hotel Vila Galé Albacora, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa considered that the Algarve “needs a redoubled and specific attention”. “There is no other region in the country that depends so much on tourism, a sector that hit the bottom,” he said. The Government has already announced the elaboration of a specific recovery plan for the region, something that Rui Rio, president of PSD, also mentioned, in a recent visit to the Algarve, to be necessary.

“When the Government spoke of a specific plan for the Algarve and I saw the opposition leader talking about it, I thought it was a good sign that they understood that this is a national priority. It is neither the government nor the opposition. It belongs to everyone”, stated Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, speaking to journalists.

The Municipality of Silves has distributed food baskets to 23 households in the municipality.

The baskets are the result of a donation made by elements of the foreign community and were destined to socioeconomically deprived households, residing in several parishes in the municipality, and referenced by the municipal Social Action Sector.

In a press release, the municipality states that the baskets delivered were made up of essential products, including dairy products, olive oil, grain, beans, canned goods, pasta and crackers.

In the same note sent to the media, the Municipality of Silves “thanks the entire foreign community involved for the generous offer of these products, which naturally made a big difference in the daily lives of these families” who were more vulnerable due to the pandemic situation that we currently go through.

Acores

Situation Report Azores 31st July – 1st August 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores 

The Regional Health Authority has reported that, after 1,100 tests carried out in the two reference laboratories in the last 24 hours, two positive cases of Covid-19 on the island of São Miguel have been diagnosed.

One of the diagnosed cases is a 58-year-old man, not resident in the Azores, who landed by air from the continent on July 24th, with a negative test document.  When he took his 6th day test, this one turned out to be positive.

The other case is a 44-year-old woman, resident on the island of São Miguel, who disembarked in the Region from the continent on July 30th, and on arrival obtained a positive result in the screening test for the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

So, with another positive case on Wednesday and in the Region as a whole, 174 cases of infection with the new coronavirus have been diagnosed, with currently 18 active positive cases, of which 17 on the island of São Miguel and one on the island of Terceira.

In other news, a security guard from a private company in Ponta Delgada was the victim of a frenzied attack yesterday at dawn.

The victim was attacked with a ‘close range’ weapon, suffering injuries to the head, neck and shoulder and requiring hospital treatment. According to the latest information, he has been discharged and is recovering from his injuries.  The attacker was caught in the act and arrested at the scene, the 30 year-old man is being held by the PSP in Ponta Delgada.

 

Portugal Situation report Wednesday 29th July 2020

Introduction

Good morning – Yesterday, Safe Communities met with Rita Marques the Secretary of State for Tourism organised by the President of Regional Tourism Algarve, Joao Fernandes.

The meeting was very helpful in exchanging many views and ideas concerning tourism, travel corridors, creating awareness of preventive measures for visitors to Portugal and various other matters. A very positive meeting reflecting the views many people have expressed.

Although it is yet to be confirmed by the Council of Ministers tomorrow, it appears from the Minister of Internal Administration, Eduardo Cabrita, that the Situation of Calamity in the 19 parishes in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area (AML) will be downgraded to a Situation of Contingency (second lowest level) thus bringing them into line with the remainder of the AML which comprises 18 municipalities. This reflects the decreasing number of confirmed cases in these areas over the last week. We will post once details are confirmed.

In contrast to this, however, the Madeira Regional Government decided to extend the Situation of Calamity for another month, from the 1st of August until the 31st of August, despite the fact that there have only bee 105 cases to date and only 8 active cases. In addition, the use of face masks will be mandatory in all public spaces in the Madeira Autonomous Region.  This measure will come into effect on the 1st of August. Children up to 10 years old, disabled people who find it difficult to insert and to remove the mask without assistance will be exempted from this. Clearly the approach in Madeira is very different to the mainland. This is an excellent report by our volunteer Daniel Fernandes and I do suggest that you study this.

We posted yesterday a very useful DGS Guide on “contact tracing” and the risks of catching Covid-19, Jenny Byers one of our volunteers kindly translated the document for us into English. This can be found on our Guides page along with many guides we have translated during the pandemic.

The guide at Appendix 1 outlines your exposure to risk in different situations: such as: on an aircraft, on public transport, face to face contacts; direct contact with a confirmed case etc. Suggest reading particularly Appendix 1 which will help you avoid risk situations where possible.

There was an apt reminder from the Mayor of Albufeira yesterday concerning beach cliff instability due to natural erosion. Please ensure that you follow the danger signs that are clearly marked and avoid close proximity to the base of cliffs where there is a risk of falling debris.

Please note that our next Situation Report will be Saturday morning although off course any important or urgent news 3will be posted in the meanwhile. The Overseas reports continue on a daily basis.

We hope you have a very Safe Day.

Covid-19 Statistics

Portugal yesterday registered three more deaths and 111 new cases of infection by covid-19 in relation to Monday, according to the daily bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS).

According to the bulletin, since the beginning of the pandemic until Tuesday, there were 50,410 confirmed cases of infection and 1,722 deaths.

The region of Lisbon and the Vale do Tejo, where there are more active outbreaks of covid-19, yesterday totalled 25,617 cases, 68 more than the day before, which is 61% of the total of new infections.

In percentage terms, in the last 24 hours, the increase in deaths was 0.2% (from 1,719 to 1,722) and that of confirmed cases was 0.2% (from 50,299 to 50,410).

In number of cases, Lisbon and the Vale do Tejo lead, with 25,617, followed by the North region (18,549, with 24 new cases), the Center region (4,422, plus 11 cases). The Algarve has 853 cases, and Alentejo has 697 cases, six more cases than the day before.

The North region that continues to record the highest number of deaths (828), followed by the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo region (591), the Center (252), Alentejo (21), Algarve (15) and the Azores (15).

Lisbon Region continues with a downward trend in New Cases

The Minister of Health said yesterday that there remains a downward trend in new contagions of covid-19 in the region of Lisbon and the Vale do Tejo and that the transmissibility ratio (RT) is 0.94, with a “favourable evolution”.

At the pandemic follow-up press conference, Marta Temido said that 196 outbreaks continue to be active across the country, the majority (119) in the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo (LVT) region, 41 in the North, 13 in the Center and the Algarve and 10 in Alentejo, making 13,205 active cases of covid-19.

Reporting to data from the Trace Covid application – which supports doctors in case management – the highest percentage of active cases of the new coronavirus is found in LVT, totaling 67%, followed by the north, center and then Alentejo and Algarve.

The minister recalled the publication, on Friday, of a new norm of the General Directorate of Health on the tracking of contacts of infected people, stressing that it is “absolutely decisive” to maintain “a trajectory that gives comfort” with the strict compliance with the measures to prevent the transmission of covid-19.

Parliament official tested positive

An official of the Assembly of the Republic was diagnosed with covid-19 last week, a parliamentary source told Lusa yesterday.

The employee, who was at home, took the test on Friday and the six others who had contact with him were identified, are in quarantine and will also be tested, the same source added.

This is the first known case of an Assembly of the Republic official with a positive test for coronavirus.

According to the contingency plan in force in parliament since March and which has been updated, when the pandemic was declared, all people moving within the building must wear masks and the rule of social distance is recommended.

It was not possible to confirm when and how parliamentary groups were informed of this positive case of covid-19.

During the most critical period of the pandemic and confinement, between March and April, parliament did not close, but substantially reduced its activity and the presence of officials, most of whom were also telecommuting.

At the level of parliamentary employees, a substantial reduction in their physical presence was made and less than 15 were employed daily at the São Bento Palace, a figure that rose to around 80 on plenary days, until April.

It was only in May that the plenary sessions of the Assembly resumed their weekly schedule, although with adaptations, so that not many deputies were in the session room.

Project “Medicine at Home”

About 300 patients are receiving hospital medicines at home, as part of a project driven by Covid-19, which prevents travel and unites the Hospital Center of Trás-os-Montes and Alto Douro (CHTMAD), 13 municipalities and firefighters.

In the midst of confinement due to covid-19, the project “Medicament COnVIDa em Casa” was created from CHTMAD, with its headquarters in Vila Real, to respond to the difficulties imposed by the pandemic, which is now intended to expand and transform it into “Medicament at Home”.

“The project consisted of developing a process for delivering medicines to the patients’ homes,” said Lusa Hugo Moreiras, administrator of CHTMAD with the pharmacy area.

At issue are the medicines that are exclusively dispensed in the hospital, that is, the medicines that patients must collect periodically at the hospital pharmacy.

Hugo Moreiras explained that some users “expressed fear” of going to the hospital due to the pandemic and mentioned that the project, in addition to avoiding travel, safeguards “also the health of professionals”.

Thus, in order to respond to this, a project was created that consists of municipalities or fire brigades collecting the medicines and delivering them to the sick.

The first protocol was signed with the Peso da Régua Chamber on April 6, followed by the remaining municipalities with CHTMAD hospital units: Chaves, Lamego and Vila Real.

“We had more than 80 patients who were given the medicines by the municipalities and 223 patients who were delivered to by the fire brigade,” said Hugo Moreiras.

The official added that, until now, “50% of the patients” have adhered and benefited from the project and that the objective is “to reach 70%”

Annually, he said, there are about “9,000 patients who take medication” in that hospital.

Pandemic had impact on Hepatitis Diagnosis

The director of the National Program for Viral Hepatitis said today that there was “a clear impact” of the covid-19 pandemic in the diagnosis of these diseases that need to be recovered, making more screenings and starting treatments that had been pending.

“It is not worth thinking that there was no impact, because there was”, “the screening teams that were on the ground had to suspend their activity”, the primary health consultations also reduced a lot and “there were certainly diagnoses that did not happen”, said Isabel Aldir on World Hepatitis Day.

According to the Isabel Aldir, treatments in the area of ​​viral hepatitis were also delayed because “people did not arrive at hospital care or they were already seeing their consultations postponed by confinement”.

For this reason, she noted, “there was a clear impact of this situation that now we all have to try to recover, making more screenings, recovering consultations, starting treatments that had been pending”.

“We all now, individually, propose to do a little more every day to be able to minimize the impact we suffer from the covid-19”, maintained Isabel Aldir

The doctor acknowledged that it is a situation that requires a great effort from health professionals: “we have everything that results from normal activity, now aggravated by recovering what is behind us and at a time when the organization of services, the way of functioning is not identical to what it was”.

“But we have already demonstrated, and the last few months have been clear, that we are willing, we have to know, and that when we need to, we know how to respond appropriately, and therefore, I believe and I hope that we will be able to get through this phase and arrive at the end and the balance, if it is not positive, at least it is not very negative”, she maintained.

Pandemic Restrictions

MAI – The 19 parishes in Lisbon Metropolitan area to move from Situation of Calamity to Situation of Contingency to align with remainder of AML.

The Minister of Internal Administration said yesterday that all municipalities in the Metropolitan Area of Lisbon are to be placed “in a contingency situation” and added that the restrictions applied in this area, namely in the opening hours of the establishments, will remain – subject to decision of Council of Ministers.

The majority of mainland Portugal entered on July 1 in a situation of alert due to the pandemic of covid-19, with the exception of the Lisbon Metropolitan Area, which passed to the higher state of contingency.

In this area, which consists of 18 municipalities, 19 parishes in five municipalities – Loures, Amadora, Odivelas, Lisbon and Sintra – remained in a situation of calamity (the highest level of restrictions) apart from a State of Emergency.

The Minister said “There is no reason today to distinguish these five municipalities [Lisbon, Odivelas, Sintra, Amadora and Loures] from the rest of the Metropolitan Area of Lisbon.

This means that the measures must be applied in a transversal, intensive way, throughout the whole of the Metropolitan area”, said Eduardo Cabrita, at the end of a follow-up meeting of the“ covid-19 prevention and control strategy in the Metropolitan Area of Lisbon” , with Government and mayors.

This will be passed to the Council of Ministers on Thursday for a final decision on the possibility of the 19 parishes currently in situations of calamity (located in these five municipalities) moving to the contingency situation (lowest level).

The majority of mainland Portugal entered on July 1 in a situation of alert due to the pandemic of covid-19, with the exception of the Metropolitan Area, which passed to the state of contingency.

Covid-19: Deco survey points to fear of public spaces and holiday cancellations

More than three quarters of respondents in a Deco study say they avoid public spaces for fear of contagion from covid-19, almost half cancelled their holiday plans and also about half postponed projects and investments.

According to the survey by the consumer protection association, carried out between 16 and 20 July, despite the reopening of most services and the return to work for part of the population, respondents continue to express fear of returning to the same routines prior to the beginning of the crisis caused by the new coronavirus.

More than three quarters of the 1006 respondents ‘online’, between 18 and 74 years old, declare that they have avoided or even stopped using public spaces, such as restaurants, public transport or shopping centers, while more than half cancelled or postponed holidays and close to half postponed projects initially scheduled for this year, such as buying a house or a new car.

On the other hand, seven out of ten respondents report the postponement of at least one scheduled health service and 22% said they were cancelled since the beginning of the pandemic.

“It is urgent that the health units reschedule these consultations, diagnostic exams and surgeries postponed or cancelled over the past few months, under penalty of seeing an increase in the mortality and morbidity rates due to the lack of follow-up by all non-covid patients. ””, Concludes Deco, in the analysis of the survey.

Region Reports

Madeira Situation Report 27th – 28th July by Daniel Fernandes

Covid-19 update

There were no new Covid-19 cases in the last two days. Overall, there have been 105 cases, with 8 active cases and 97 recoveries. Five of the active cases were imported into Madeira and identified after health checks at Funchal Airport and three were the result of local transmission. There are 7 patients in isolation in a designated hotel and 1 in isolation at home.

There are 5,119 people under active monitoring and 7,134 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of Monday, there had been 1,563 suspected cases, of which 1,458 were not confirmed.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal and Porto Santo airports, 14,146 samples had been collected up until yesterday (at 16h00). Overall, 41,435 samples have been processed in the Autonomous Region of Madeira.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 88 calls from Sunday to Tuesday (34 from Sunday to Monday and 54 from Monday to Tuesday). Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 10,148.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,763 calls with 159 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/28/madeira-continua-com-8-casos-ativos-de-covid-19/

Situation of Calamity extended

The Madeira Regional Government decided to extend the Situation of Calamity for another month,  from the 1st of August until the 31st of August.

https://24.sapo.pt/atualidade/artigos/covid-19-madeira-prorroga-situacao-de-calamidade-e-determina-uso-obrigatorio-de-mascara

Mandatory face mask use in ALL public spaces

The use of face masks will be mandatory in all public spaces in the Madeira Autonomous Region.  This measure will come into effect on the 1st of August. Children up to 10 years old, disabled people who find it difficult to insert and to remove the mask without assistance will be exempted from this measure. ARAE (Autoridade Regional das Atividades Económicas – Regional Economic Activity Authority) and the security forces will monitor compliance with this new measure.

https://24.sapo.pt/atualidade/artigos/covid-19-madeira-prorroga-situacao-de-calamidade-e-determina-uso-obrigatorio-de-mascara

Passengers who refuse to be tested for Covid-19 on arrival could be subjected to mandatory confinement.

Passengers travelling to the Autonomous Region of Madeira who refuse to be tested on arrival could be charged with a crime of disobedience, and could be forced by health authorities to be in mandatory confinement in a designated hotel for 14 days. Such passengers would be charged for this period of quarantine.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/99901/Passageiros_que_recusem_teste_na_chegada_a_Madeira_ficam_em_confinamento_obrigatorio

New rules for passengers

Passengers who had departed from Funchal and Porto Santo airports and returned within 72 hours must be tested between the 5th and 7th day.

Passengers on flights that had been diverted to Porto Santo must remain in mandatory isolation until boarding a new flight. Passengers who wish to stay in Porto Santo or to travel to Madeira by sea must be tested for Covid-19 (PCR test) at Porto Santo Airport, and remain in mandatory isolation until the test results are known. Passengers who fly from Porto Santo to Funchal must be identified and reported to the health authorities.

https://24.sapo.pt/atualidade/artigos/covid-19-madeira-prorroga-situacao-de-calamidade-e-determina-uso-obrigatorio-de-mascara

Roadworks at Via Rápida (VR1)

The exit and entrance roads to VR1 at junction 13 (nó 13 – Boa Nova), heading from Ribeira Brava towards Funchal, will be closed to traffic due to scheduled work on the road pavement, from July 31st to August 1st, between 21h00 and 07h00 (following day).

As a diversion, Vialitoral suggests drivers enter or exit at the previous or next junctions (junctions 12 and 14). Vialitoral asked drivers to comply with all existing road signs. All similar information is available and constantly updated on the following website: www.vialitoral.com

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/99876/Vialitoral_encerra_dia_31_saida_e_entrada_da_via_rapida_do_no_13_Boa_Nova_no_sentido__Ribeira_Brava-Funchal

Water supply disruptions TODAY

There will be some scheduled water supply disruptions today. The following areas will be affected:

Câmara de Lobos (freguesia – parish) – Torre, Ponte dos Frades and Palmeira  (09h00-12h00)

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/99781/ARM_diz_que_havera_interrupcao_do_abastecimento_agua_em_Camara_de_Lobos

São Pedro (freguesia – parish) – Calçada de Santa Clara, Rua das Mercês and Largo Severiano Ferraz (14h00-18h00)

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/99849/Abastecimento_de_agua_sera_interrompido_amanha_na_Travessa_das_Capuchinhas

Santana (freguesia – parish) – Feiteira do Nuno, Atalho, Lamaceiros and Lombo do Curral (14h00-18h00)

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/99856/Interrupcao_de_abastecimento_de_agua_em_Santana

Power cut

Empresa de Electricidade da Madeira (Madeira power supplier) announced there will be power cuts in the following days, due to planned work on the electricity supply network. The following areas will be affected:

FUNCHAL

29th July – 09h00 to 11h30 & 14h00 to 16h00

– Rua de Santa Luzia (numbers 16 to 99)

– Travessa do Pina (numbers 1 to 18)

29th July to 31st July – 09h00 to 11h30 & 14h00 to 16h00

– Avenida Santiago Menor (numbers 58 and 60)

– Rua Dr. António Jardim de Oliveira (number 8) & Rua do Lazareto

– Travessa do Lazareto (numbers 2A and 7A) & Travessa 2ª do Lazareto

30th July – 09h00 to 12h00

– Rua Nova da Igreja (S. Gonçalo) & Rua Professor. Modesto Trindade

– Beco do Carteiro

– Travessa da Pedra Mole

31st July – 08h30 to 10h00

– Rua Dr. Fernão de Ornelas (number 41)

31st July – 09h00 to 11h30 & 14h00 to 16h00

– Travessa do Tanque (numbers 63, 65 and 69)

However, power could be restored during the time frame mentioned above. So, for safety purposes, it should be assumed that there will be power at any time during this period of time.

If necessary, customers can contact the free Customer Support Service (Serviço de Apoio ao Cliente): 800 221 187.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/25/publicidade-o-fornecimento-de-energia-sera-interrompido-nos-dias-horas-e-locais-abaixo-indicados-anuncio-54-2020/

Algarve

Covid-19:

67.4% of Algarvian patients with Covid-19 have recovered, according to the regional data to which South Information had access.

Thus, of the 841 cases that the Regional Health Authority reports in relation to yesterday, 27 July, there were already 567 people recovered, while the number of deaths has remained at 17 since the beginning of June. This means that the number of active cases across the region now stands at just 257.

The municipality that still has the most active cases is Albufeira (50), followed by Loulé and Faro, both with 46. Castro Marim, despite having had three confirmed cases, a long time ago that has no active case.

Vila do Bispo and Alcoutim remain the only two municipalities in the Algarve where, so far, no positive cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed.

In the past few days, an outbreak that affected 6 people of the same family was reported, two of whom worked in a restaurant in Armação de Pêra. The restaurant, as well as an ice cream parlour, were closed as a precaution, but the outbreak is already contained.

However, for some days now, the figures communicated by the Regional Health Authority to mayors and other officials in the Algarve are below the numbers announced by DGS. The first totals 841 (no new cases today), the second 853 (no new cases for two days).

https://www.sulinformacao.pt/2020/07/covid-19-674-dos-doentes-algarvios-ja-recuperaram-pelo-que-casos-ativos-diminuem-mapa/

Progressive recovery measures do not satisfy companies in the Algarve – hoteliers

The President of the Association of Hotels and Tourist Enterprises of the Algarve (AHETA) considered today that the progressive recovery measures approved on Monday by the Government “do not satisfy” companies in the region’s tourism sector.

“These measures may, perhaps, adjust to the needs and requirements of other sectors of activity in the rest of the country, but they do not, of course, satisfy the situation in the Algarve,” said Elidérico Viegas.

The leader spoke after a meeting of the Secretary of State for Tourism, Rita Marques, with businessmen and unions in the region, held at the headquarters of Turismo do Algarve, in Faro.

“The Secretary of State came to announce the measures that the Government approved for the country, not for the Algarve, nor for tourism. What was expected was that there could be positive discrimination measures for the region, much more affected than the rest of the country, given its dependence on a single sector of activity “, stressed the leader of AHETA.

Extraordinary support for the progressive resumption, which will be in effect between August and December, may be requested by companies with a break in revenue equal to or greater than 40% “as of the end of next week”, announced on Monday the Minister of Labor , Solidarity and Social Security.

The additional support for companies with a break in sales of 75% or more can only be requested in September, but will have retroactive effects to August, said the minister.

Extraordinary support for the progressive recovery was provided for in the Economic and Social Stabilization Program (PEES) but did not include new additional support for companies with a break in sales equal to or greater than 75%.

Albufeira – Beach safety reminder

The Albufeira Town Council (Algarve) launched a campaign on the municipality’s beaches, alerting bathers to risky behaviours, not only due to the covid-19 pandemic but also due to the instability of the cliffs, was announced today.

Under the motto ‘Albufeira safe beaches’, the awareness campaign calls on users of the beaches to adopt “protective measures and respect for the signs existing at the entrance to the beaches”, the municipality said in a statement.

Through information available in Portuguese and English, the rules for responsible use in the 25 bathing areas of the municipality and the duties of bathers are pointed out in actions promoted by the Municipal Civil Protection Service.

Started on June 6, the campaign will continue until September, with awareness actions reinforced on the beaches through a tent that provides information between 9:30 am and 11:30 am.

For the Mayor of Albufeira, José Carlos Rolo, cited in the document, the objective is to alert holiday makers “to the importance of a preventive attitude, calling attention to avoid behaviours that jeopardize the health and safety of all”.

According to the mayor, the municipality “would not spare efforts to ensure that the bathing season runs safely”, not only due to the pandemic caused by the covid-19, but also due to the danger of the cliffs falling.

The initiative aims to alert to the problem of cliff instability due to natural erosion, with the adoption of preventive measures, namely, when beach users seek shelter from the sun and wind at the base of the cliffs, whose risk of falling debris is permanent.

Beaches

Beachgoers complain about Non-Compliance with Rules

Users of Manta Rota beach have complained about non-compliance with rules to contain the covid-19 pandemic, but the Vila Real de Santo António City Council has ensured that the bathing areas of municipality “is compliant as stipulated”.

Célia Santos frequents the Algarve beach and told the Lusa agency that, last Sunday, she was able to verify on the beach of Manta Rota that the beach was “crowded” and people were positioned “without taking into account any measure of contingency and social distancing”.

“The capacity of the beach is largely exceeded and there is no inspection of compliance with it. There is no social distance. There is no indication of the capacity of the beach, such as signs or flags”, criticized the user of that beach in the district of Faro.

The same source pointed out that he could also see on the beach access walkway “crowded people”, who “did not wear masks” and “did not respect social distance”.

“The standards are not being monitored or respected. There is no intervention by the authorities. The enjoyment of these public spaces in the context of the covid-19 pandemic is an attack on public health”, also considered Célia Santos.

Carlos Sousa, who has been on vacation in the area for about a week and has been attending the Algarve beach, said that “the situation of non-compliance or greater proximity between people usually occurs”.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 28th July – 29th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores 

On Monday the Regional Health Authority has reported that, following 535 new ‘tests’ in the Region, two positive cases of Covid-19 on the island of São Miguel have been diagnosed.  One of the diagnosed cases is a 43-year-old man and non-resident.  He arrived on July 19th from the continent, his test on arrival was negative but six days later when he took the required, second test it was positive for the SARS-CoV-2 virus

The other case diagnosed is a 56-year-old man, non-resident, who arrived in the Region on July 25th and who, when he was tested on arrival his test was positive.

On Tuesday 28th July the Regional Health Authority reported that there have been six new cases of covid-19 diagnosed, three were made following 1,007 tests carried out in the two reference laboratories in the Region, one of which referred to a 53-year-old woman who is not resident in the Azores. She arrived by air from the mainland on July 26th and on Monday received a positive result.

The other two cases were diagnosed as a result of tests carried out in the Region’s laboratories refer to a 62-year-old man and a 12-year-old girl, who landed in the Region by air, from the continental on 25th July and that, after a first inconclusive result, obtained a positive result on Monday.

The other three cases are men, aged between 38 and 54 years old, living in the Azores, who obtained positive results in the screening tests for the SARS-CoV-2 virus performed prior to surgical intervention in a private clinic, this is normal and follows the guidelines and recommendations of the Regional Health Directorate.

One of these men had arrived on July 22nd and was tested negative on arrival

 

 

 

Portugal Situation Report Monday 27th July 2020

Introduction

It was a privilege yesterday to be invited to attend a small group meeting in Loulé with the President of the Republic Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa to discuss Covid-19.

The meeting lasted two hours and the president gave his view on various social, economic and political issues concerning both Portugal and overseas, concerning the pandemic.

Safe Communities were able to ask a number of questions reflecting feedback we had received from the foreign community over the last 4 months. We wish to thank the Mayor of Loulé Vitor Aleixo for his very kind invitation. More details in our Algarve news.

Regarding fires, the National Authority for Emergency and Civil Protection (ANEPC) yesterday issued a warning to the population with preventive measures, within the scope of the declaration of the alert situation determined by the Government due to the increased risk of fire.

In the warning, the authority points out that the IPMA foresees for the next 48 hours “a meteorological scenario of hot and dry weather (inland) and strong wind in the coastal strip and highlands”. We have posted this in English and we ask people to follow this important advice given the severe weather conditions.

For 27th and 28th July there is also a Situation of Alert for rural fires in place for Mainland Portugal with certain prohibitions in place and we have published this as a separate post.

Regarding general communication from the ANEPC concerning rural fires, Safe Communities Portugal has been lobbying for some time with government that there is a need for greater and timelier information to the population during these incidents. Starting in the last few days we are now seeing this information, including most importantly the perimeter of fires which is important for the population. We will be reporting on this development more in due course.

Our next SITREP REPORT will be on Wednesday – in the meantime we send our thoughts to all those dealing with the major fire in Oleiros near Castelo Branco which has already cost the life of a firefighter Jorge Diogo aged 21 years who died in a vehicle accident. Our condolences to his family and friends.

On that sad note please have a Safe Day.

 

Covid – 19 DGS Situation

Portugal registered yesterday one more death and 209 new cases of infection by covid-19 in relation to Saturday, according to the daily bulletin of the Directorate-General of Health (DGS).

According to the DGS epidemiological bulletin, Portugal now has 50,164 confirmed cases of covid-19 since the beginning of the pandemic and 1,717 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

Lisbon and Tagus Valley, where there have been more active outbreaks, now totals 25,448 cases, 155 more infected than the day before, and one more dead (the only one registered in the country in 24 hours), bringing the total number of deaths in this region to 586 .

In percentage terms, in the last 24 hours, the increase in deaths was 0.05% (from 1,716 to 1,717) and that of confirmed cases was 0.4% (from 49,955 to 50,164).

In number of cases, Lisbon and Vale do Tejo leads with 25,448, followed by the North region (18,503, with 16 new cases), the Center region (4,407, plus six cases), the Algarve (853 and 15 new cases) and Alentejo (688, plus 17 cases).

Despite one more death in the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo area, it is the North that continues to record the highest number of deaths (828), then the Lisbon and Tagus Valley region (586), then the Center (252), Alentejo (21), Algarve (15) and Azores (15).

Moura Municipality records Outbreak

An outbreak of covid-19 emerged in the village of Póvoa de São Miguel, in the municipality of Moura, district of Beja, and there are already 26 confirmed cases, of which one is hospitalized, said today municipal civil protection coordinator.

The coordinator of the municipal civil protection service, Diogo Saraiva, said that the first four positive cases were detected almost 15 days ago in this Alentejo village.

From the outset, he said, “the screening of direct contacts” of the first four infected people was carried out by Public Health and, subsequently, tests were performed on covid-19.

Last Tuesday, according to the official, 53 people were tested, whose results allowed the detection of 12 more confirmed cases of the disease caused by the new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2.

“But it was necessary to deepen the connections” with the confirmed positive cases, so another 142 tests were done on Friday, which resulted in another 10 positive cases, he said.

To date, said the coordinator of the municipal civil protection service in Moura, there are 26 confirmed cases of covid-19 in Póvoa de São Miguel, with one of these people being admitted to the hospital in Beja.

Pandemic Restrictions

Maritime Police closes two establishments due to Illegal Parties

The Maritime Police yesterday announced the closure of two establishments on a beach in Costa da Caparica, in Almada, Setúbal district, which were hosting parties that “indicated non-compliance” with legal measures to combat to the covid-19 pandemic.

“The events in question were attended by about 100 to 300 people, respectively, who obeyed the stop order and dispersed, with those responsible for both establishments being fined and detained for the crime of disobedience”, said the Maritime Police. This refers to an occurrence which was registered during Saturday night, on a beach in Costa da Caparica.

The two commercial establishments were “promoting parties which were non-compliant with legal measures to control the spread of the new coronavirus”, said the National Maritime Authority.

Education

Minister of Education accuses Fenprof of destabilising Families

The Minister of Education, Tiago Brandão Rodrigues, yesterday accused the secretary general of the National Teachers Federation (Fenprof), Mário Nogueira, of creating anguish in families, by making statements that, instead of clarifying, “cause noise”.

Speaking to the Porto Canal television station, the Education Minister said that Mário Nogueira’s statements “are understood by Portuguese society as more noise than some kind of clarification, than some kind of profitable path in creating security and of confidence” in a time of pandemic.

Two weeks ago, in a video published on the Fenprof portal, the general secretary of the union structure accused the Ministry of Education as “morally and materially responsible” for the lack of safety conditions in schools in case teachers become sick or infected with covid-19.

In a video published on July 17 on the Fenprof portal, the leader of the largest representative structure of teachers maintained that the measures announced by the tutelage for the next school year, which begins in September, “call into question the safe return to school health “, as well as education.

Other news

Minister speaks about fire at Oleiros

The Minister of Internal Administration admits – “it is necessary to say it realistically” – that the fire that started in Oleiros and has already spread to Proença-a-Nova and Sertã, may last until Tuesday or Wednesday next week.

In a press conference in Carnaxide, headquarters of Civil Protection, Eduardo Cabrita recalls that the weather conditions are not helping in the fight against the flames: “temperatures that may go up to 43 degrees, winds over 65 km/h and very low humidity levels”.

“We are putting all our efforts into containing the fire and protecting the populations, starting the fight from the back and the flanks where the action is viable”, he also told the journalists.

Human life is the priority, underlined Eduardo Cabrita.

As at 2100 hrs yesterday, 854 operational firefighters, supported by 264 vehicles and 14 aircraft are fighting the fire.

The minister also criticized the “absolutely avoidable” activities that have led to fires in recent weeks, including the barbecue that caused the fire in Vale de Cambra.

“Therefore, we have determined that all work in rural areas will be prohibited until midnight next Tuesday,” he announced.

Regional reports

Madeira 

Covid-19 update

There were no new Covid-19 cases yesterday. The suspected case that had been identified at Funchal Airport turned out to be negative. There were 2 recoveries. There are now 105 cases, with 8 active cases and 97 recoveries. Five of the active cases were imported into Madeira and identified after health checks at Funchal Airport and three were the result of local transmission. There are 7 patients in isolation in a designated hotel and 1 in isolation at home.

There are 4,919 people under active monitoring and 7,015 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of Sunday, there had been 1,563 suspected cases, of which 1,458 were not confirmed.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal and Porto Santo airports, 12,762 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 16h00). Overall, 39,870 samples have been processed in the Autonomous Region of Madeira.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 40 calls from Saturday to Sunday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 10,060.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,754 calls with 158 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/26/nao-se-confirmou-novo-caso-suspeito-de-covid-19-na-madeira-hoje-ha-mais-2-recuperados/

Power cut

Empresa de Electricidade da Madeira (Madeira power supplier) announced there will be power cuts in the following days, due to planned work on the electricity supply network. The following areas will be affected:

FUNCHAL

27th July – 09h00 to 12h00

– Caminho dos Saltos (number 191)

– Travessa da Casa Branca (number 4)

– Escadinhas dos Saltos

28th July – 09h00 to 12h00

– Beco da Pena (numbers 13, 15, 17 and 19)

28th and 29th July – 09h00 to 11h30 & 14h00 to 16h00

– Caminho das Preces; Caminho de Santa Quitéria (numbers 66 to 76)

– Vereda dos Farias (numbers 1 to 43)

– Beco das Preces (numbers 1 to 11)

-Travessa das Preces (numbers 28 to 41)

SÃO VICENTE

27th July – 09h30 to 10h00 & 12h00 to 12h30

– Sítio do Lanço; Sítio da Ribeira do Passo; Sítio das Furnas

27th July – 10h00 to 12h00

– Sítio da Ribeira do Passo

CAMACHA

28th July – 10h00 to 10h30 & 11h30 to 12h00

– Sítio do Rachão de Baixo; Sítio da Eira de Fora; Sítio do Lombo Barreto (IGA)

28th July – 10h00 to 12h00

– Sítio do Ribeiro Serrão

However, power could be restored during the time frame mentioned above. So, for safety purposes, it should be assumed that there will be power at any time during this period of time.

If necessary, customers can contact the free Customer Support Service (Serviço de Apoio ao Cliente): 800 221 187.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/25/publicidade-o-fornecimento-de-energia-sera-interrompido-nos-dias-horas-e-locais-abaixo-indicados-anuncio-54-2020/

 

Algarve

The President kept his promise to visit the Home of Santa Casa da Misericórdia in Boliqueime.

The visit took place yesterday afternoon, in the presence of the home director, the Mayor of Loulé – Vítor Aleixo, the Secretary of State for Fisheries and Coordinator of the response to the pandemic by covid.19 in the Algarve, José Apolinário and the District Commander Civil Protection, Vaz Pinto, among other entities.

The Boliqueime home registered an outbreak of covid-19 in early April, with dozens of infected users and employees (40), and 5 fatalities among users.

The President of the Republic, advised that “it was an honour and a pleasure” to have visited the home for the first time, leaving the promise that he will return, “when we all take off our masks”.

Between selfies and many nods, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa was toasted by the directors of the home and by the parish priest of Boliqueime who offered an image of the patron saint, São Sebastião.

Then, the President went on foot to the Mother Church, where he attended a mass. From 8:00 pm, he then met with the mayors of the Algarve at a working dinner in a restaurant in Querença, also in the municipality of Loulé.

This is the third visit that the head of state has made to the Algarve this month, after Vila Real de Stº António and Lagos.

President of the Republic meets community representatives in Loule

Yesterday President Safe Communities Portugal David Thomas attended small group meeting in Loulé with the President of the Republic Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa to discuss Covid-19.

The meeting lasted two hours and the president gave his view on various social, economic and political issues concerning both Portugal and overseas, concerning the pandemic.

Safe Communities were able to ask a number of questions reflecting feedback we had received from the foreign community over the last 4 months. We wish to thank the Mayor of Loulé Vitor Aleixo for his very kind invitation.

The President said, “I had a meeting with the British community that lives here in Loulé and there was a great effort on their part to do everything, to the extent of their possibilities, to show how they are received, how they live here, how they like to live here, how they want to work for the good relationship between the two countries. Naturally, in the economic part, in the business part, but also in the personal part”, he revealed.

“This is very important, because diplomacy is not just about ambassadors, ministers, governments and heads of state. It is made of people. And the people who reside here – and there are many, almost 50 thousand – know the Algarve very well, since the vast majority live here. They know what the reality is, they present the reality and that has a lot of strength to convince, to persuade, first, their compatriots and, later, the political leaders”, he reinforced.

In addition to the community residing in this Algarve municipality, there are others working proactively to lift restrictions. The Head of State even spoke of mayors “who are making videos and testimonies of those who live here reach British society. It all helps a lot, it takes time, but it helps”.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa was also hopeful that restrictions on flights from Portugal would be lifted by the United Kingdom even before the end of the summer.

“We all expect that and we are working to make it happen. Summer only ends in September. It would be bad if the restrictions reamined in place” he said.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 26th July – 27th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores. 

A woman and her five-year-old daughter, put into ‘quarantine’ in an hotel at their own expense because they were sitting close to a man  on a flight from Lisbon to Graciosa via Ponta Delgada who’d tested ‘positive’ for “Covid-19”, have filed a request for immediate release (‘habeas corpus’).  He was sitting, just in front of them on the flight.  Although tests on them have proved ‘negative’, the health delegation still insists that they stay in ‘quarantine’ and the result of her legal ‘appeal’ is to be determined.

Meanwhile, a 39-year-old man, normally resident on the continent, has recovered on the island of Flores.

The ‘Archipelago’ has had 163 cases of “Covid-19” infection since the outbreak began on the 15th of March and there are currently 8 ‘active’ cases – 7 on São Miguel and 1 on Terceira.

 

 

Portugal Situation Report Sunday 26TH JULY

Introduction

If the decision to exclude Portugal from the UK’s travel corridor came as a surprise, the decision yesterday to exclude Spain, to many, did not. Confirmed cases have been escalating in the country recently, many times higher than Portugal. Travellers returning to the UK from Spain after midnight 25th July will have to quarantine for 14 days, the government has said.

The decision came following a significant spike in coronavirus cases in Spain, with more than 900 new cases of the virus reported on Friday.

The sudden nature of the decision has however caught many surprise and puts considerable pressure on an already trouble tourism industry. It will also close the door on those who were planning to travel to Portugal using a Spanish airport, for instance Seville, and renting a car to enter Portugal by land.

The implications are considerable as there are many tourists from the UK in Spain at present, who booked their holidays on the basis they would not have to quarantine, only now to find they will need to do so. Details can be found here https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/spain

Regarding rural fires, we are currently monitoring a fire that broke out in Oleiros, Castelo Branco District yesterday. It is still active this morning with a considerably increased deployment overnight of 625 personnel supported by 199 operatives. Despite being described as the worst fire of the year, it has yet to be upgraded by the ANEPC to a major incident. Fojo, in the municipality of Proença-a-Nova, Castelo Branco district, was evacuated, according to the mayor who added that the towns of Moutinhosa and Roda “are at risk”. There is also firefighter reported missing. Please see out Facebook post on this subject which is updated during the day.

As mentioned yesterday we have reviewed the frequency of our morning SITREPS in line with current priorities. Starting from Monday 27th July the Portugal report will be published on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday mornings each week.

The Happy Sunday report, which has proved very popular in these stressful times, will continue including both a Portuguese and global perspective, but without daily detail which will instead be published on Monday. The excellent daily overseas report produced by Louise Birch will continue as before. Off course should anything of importance take place we will publish as a news item.

Our great thanks to our loyal team of volunteers: Daniel, Louise, Elise, Jennie, David and Rameiro plus our colleague in Azores for making all this possible.

Lastly I will be on KissFM radio this morning at 0915 discussing Covid-19 and travel corridors – if you have a chance please listen in.

Covid-19 Statistics

Portugal yesterday registered four more deaths and 263 new cases of infection by covid-19 compared to Friday, according to the daily bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS).

According to the DGS epidemiological bulletin, Portugal registers 49,955 confirmed cases of covid-19 since the beginning of the pandemic and 1,716 deaths. Lisbon and the Vale do Tejo, where there have been more active outbreaks, now account for 25,293 cases, 183 more infected than the day before.

Three of the four deaths recorded today concern the region of Lisbon and the Vale do Tejo, where 585 people have died so far. The other death occurred in Alentejo, a region with a total of 21 dead and 671 infected since the beginning of the pandemic.

In percentage terms, in the last 24 hours, the increase in deaths was 0.2% (from 1,712 to 1,716) and that of confirmed cases was 0.5% (from 49,692 to 49,955).

In number of cases,

  • Lisbon and the Vale do Tejo lead with 25,293, followed by
  • the North (18,487, with 46 new cases),
  • the Central region (4,401, plus nine cases),
  • the Algarve (838 and 21 new cases) and
  • the Alentejo (671, four more cases).

Pandemic forced cancellation of summer schedule in Santarém

The summer festival in Santarém, which was being considered in a different format due to the covid-19 pandemic, will not take place at all this year, since the municipality continues to register cases of infection by the new coronavirus.

The vice-president of the Chamber of Santarém and responsible for the area of ​​Culture, Inês Barroso, said an art and culture festival, aimed at boosting the city’s historic center with the holding of dozens of events involving agents from the municipality, it was also thought “in a different concept”, with several actions taking place on six Fridays, at different times and in order to disperse the public.

However, the fact that there are still daily cases of covid-19 in the municipality is rare, it was decided to not promote events that would bring people together, even ensuring compliance with the rules of the Directorate-General for Health.

Affirming that the decision “was not easy”, Inês Barroso confessed that this stop “saddened” by the tourist attractiveness that the program, which started in 2015, already represents for the municipality and the importance it assumes for the local cultural agents.

CEiiA director says only version 2 of theventilator will be subject to CE certification

The director of CEiiA – Miguel Braga Engineering and Development Center said today that, despite the authorization of Infarmed for the use of the ventilator within the scope of covid-19, only version 2 of the equipment will be submitted CE certification.

Speaking to Lusa, Miguel Braga, director of business development and engineering services at CEiiA, in Matosinhos, explained that the authorization given by Infarmed, on July 14, under the special authorization procedure, for the use of model 1 of the Athena ventilator took into account “the emergency context” experienced in the face of the pandemic.

“If we live in an emergency, if there were no ventilators to save lives, there had to be an exceptional and special process because the situation, itself, is exceptional. What was intended was to reduce the bureaucracy in a process that tends to take time, so that we do not stay on bureaucratic issues and lose lives because of that ”, he said.

According to Miguel Braga, the authorization of Infarmed, like the European regulatory authorities that were their counterparts, was given with “a period of six months” in order to, during that period, CEiiA submit the invasive medical equipment to a “notified body” with competence to certify the Athena fan.

Although version 1 of the ventilator, which followed “strictly the long list of tests and requirements” of the special authorization procedure of Infarmed, is authorized for use in emergencies in the context of covid-19, CEiiA intends to subject the CE marking to version 2 of the equipment, an “optimized” version with “more features”.

“The decision by CEiiA was to submit CE certification to version 2 of the ventilator, which has been in development since May and which maintains the safety and reliability of the ventilator version 1”, said Miguel Braga, noting that the center will take advantage of the same technological base to “improve from an economic point of view, structure, weight and electronic features” the equipment.

Flea Market Vendors Protest for Space Reopening

About 60 vendors from Feira da Ladra yesterday demanded the reopening of the space and expressed displeasure that the Lisbon City Council did not authorize its operation, nor provide explanations for the decision.

The market participants who took part in the symbolic protest, which took place during the morning, until about 11:00 am, intended to set up the stands without items, in Largo do Campo de Santa Clara, with the necessary safety and protection measures against the covid-19, but the Municipal Police did not authorize it.

Photo: Tiago Petinga

The spokesperson for the market vendors, Sandra Raposo, said that the local authority had sent officials from the Municipal Police to the site not to let them “set up empty stands” and, alternatively, “cloths were placed on the floor”.

The approximately 60 of the 320 marketers who attended the protest, underlined that they just want to “work” and do business in that space, as it happened before the pandemic, he said. According to Sandra Raposo, the traders ask the municipality to reopen the Feira da Ladra because there are “security conditions to do so” and to apply the exemption from occupancy taxes, because they are not working.

New Rules on Contract Tracking on Portugal

DGS has published new rules on contact tracking, which define who can be considered a risk person in the context of the new coronavirus pandemic. The document, published on Saturday, clarifies that, in closed environments, including means of transport, contact with someone contaminated for at least 15 minutes will be enough to be considered a high-risk case, regardless of distance or exposure to front.

High-risk contacts

The “contact tracking” rules indicate the following cases:

  • all people who are in direct physical contact with a Covid-19 case
  • who have had contact face to face at a distance of less than 2 meters and for at least 15 minutes with someone infected
  • Cohabitation, meeting rooms or means of transport where there is at least 15 minutes in the same environment with someone infected, regardless of distance.

In all these cases, prophylactic isolation is required for 14 days at the residence or at a location defined by the local DGS structures. The Directorate-General for Health considers contact tracking to be a key element for early case detection and limiting the spread of Covid-19. The Guide is being translated into English and will be published later today.

Marcelo in a party atmosphere wanted to leave a sign of hope in Ovar

The President of the Republic stated yesterday that his presence in Ovar represents a sign of “hope for the future” after the health screen, and that the Government should, in October, define priorities and the timetable for Community support.

“It is an opportunity to remember this [recent] past, to honour those who died [of covid-19], to honour those who fought here, especially during the health screen, and to look to the future. Ovar has great potential – it has the sea and a very advanced industry, which is turning around [the crisis] – and there is here a mix of homage and hope for the future “, declared Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa greeted the president of that municipality in the district of Aveiro, Salvador Malheiro, with his elbow and closed fist, who today awarded him the Gold Medal of Municipal Merit for the support dedicated to the community during the 31 days of the sanitary siege a that it was subject to due to the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

The visit of the President of the Republic to Ovar during the municipality’s holiday also included the inaugural unveiling of what, having been announced as a mural, turned out to be a square meter sign inscribed “to all that fought the difficult battle against the covid-19 in the territory “.

Other News

SEF provides online service for automatic renewal of residence permit

The Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF) announced yesterday the availability of a new online service for renewing the residence permit for foreign citizens residing in Portugal, which can be used by around 90,000 foreign citizens. “In this way, the citizen will not even need to go to a service desk, just by confirming the request for renewal on the SEF Portal”, indicated this body, explaining that users can access the personal area and use the “Automatic Renewal” functionality of the residence permit.

After the automatic renewal of the residence permit for foreign citizens residing in Portugal, through the new functionality that was made available this week, SEF will make “all security consultations to confirm the suitability of the applicant, as well as consultations with the databases necessary to verify the fulfilment, by the applicant, of its tax obligations and before social security ”.

“After paying the fees, the citizen will receive the Residence Permit at his address”, added this security service and criminal police body, integrated in the Ministry of Internal Administration. According to information from SEF, this new functionality can be used by “about 90,000 foreign citizens, whose residence permit meets the necessary conditions to be renewed digitally”.

In a statement, SEF revealed that the provision of this new ‘online’ service complies with Order No. 5793-A / 2020, which aims to implement a simplified procedure for investigating applications for the granting of a residence permit. The objective is to mitigate the consequences that resulted from the health emergency situation due to the covid-19 pandemic, by adopting exceptional and temporary measures that allow a recovery of the pending issues and an efficiency gain in the document management of foreign citizens, a reserved competence of SEF.

In this context, SEF recalled that “visas and documents related to the stay of foreign citizens in national territory that expired on February 24 are accepted, in the same terms, until October 30 this year”, within the scope of the decree-law 22/2020 of 16 May, which alters the exceptional and temporary measures relating to the pandemic of the covid-19 disease.

Regional reports

Madeira

IASAÚDE announces new suspected case

IASAÚDE reported yesterday, in the update of the epidemiological situation in the Region, the identification of yet another suspicious case, which is being studied by the health authorities.

He is a traveller identified in the context of the surveillance activities implemented at the Covid-19 Screening Unit at Madeira Airport, which arrived in the Region yesterday and whose epidemiological investigation and laboratory analyses are already underway.

Until July 24, 1562 notifications of suspected cases of covid-19 were counted in RAM, 1457 of which were not confirmed. The Region has so far recorded 105 confirmed cases of COVID-19, of whom 95 are recovered cases and 10 are active cases.

The 10 active cases consist of seven imported cases identified in the context of the surveillance activities implemented at the Covid-19 Screening Unit at Madeira Airport and three cases of local transmission. Eight people are in isolation in a dedicated hotel unit. The other 2 active cases remain in isolation, in their own home.

To date, .people are being monitored by the health authorities of the various counties in the region, now using the MadeiraSafeToDiscover application, 4913 of these people are under active surveillance.

Algarve

DGS registers 21 new cases in the Algarve since yesterday

Yesterday the Algarve had a total of 838 cases of COVID-19 to date, 21 more infections than Friday, while at national level there are 49,955 infected, 1716 deaths and 35010 recovered, according to the epidemiological bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health.

According to the document on the epidemiological situation in the Algarve released yesterday by the District Civil Protection Commission of Faro, 17 deaths have already been recorded in the region by covid-19, contrary to information revealed by the DGS, which announce 15 deaths in the Algarve since the beginning of pandemic. According to a source from the Regional Health Administration, these “two deaths occurred in the region, but people did not have a residence in the Algarve,” she stated.

The Civil Protection document reports that on Friday there were 242 active cases, 549 recovered, 589 under active surveillance and 10 hospitalized, five of them in intensive care.

Covid-19 Regional Tourism Algarve meets with foreign community

The Algarve Tourism Region (RTA) met on 23rd July with the associations of foreign residents and the Consular Body in the region, with the aim of identifying the needs of this population in the context of the covid-19 pandemic, announced the RTA.

Among the issues discussed at the meeting, the future challenges of the region and the reaffirmation of the security of the Algarve were also on the table, aiming to “safeguard the well-being of all, including foreign residents and visitors” from the south of the country, according to the statement.

“The Algarve is today multicultural, with a population composed of different nationalities that actively participates in the community and in a transversal way to the most varied areas of collective life. Altogether, around 20% are foreigners, which makes this region unmistakably richer” says RTA president João Fernandes in a statement.

The meeting was attended by consular representatives in the Algarve from countries such as Belgium, Brazil, Finland, Italy, Poland, United Kingdom, Spain and Denmark, who share the opinion that the region is a “very safe destination”.

The representatives advocate the creation of an official green line to serve foreign visitors, which can answer frequently asked questions regarding the covid-19 pandemic in the Algarve, in addition to reinforcing information about hygiene and safety rules when tourists arrive in Portugal. The working session also included Safe Communities Portugal and AFPOP.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 26th July – 27th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores 

The Regional Health Authority has reported that following 1,268 tests carried out in the region in the last 24 hours, 1 new ‘positive’ case of “COVID-19” has been diagnosed on the island of São Miguel.

It’s a 30-year-old man, not resident in the Azores, who flew in from mainland on 23 July.  He’s in a stable clinical condition and testing and surveillance of close contacts is now being carried out by the Municipal Health Delegation.

Meanwhile, there has been a fresh ‘recovery’, a 49-year-old man who’d arrived in São Miguel on July 8 where he’s remained ‘isolated’ until now.  He was travelling to Terceira island.

With this most recent case, the ‘Archipelago’ has now had 163 cases of ‘infection’ since the outbreak began on March the 15th.  There are currently 9 ‘active’ cases; 7 on the island of São Miguel, 1 on Flores and 1 on Terceira.

 

Portugal Situation report Saturday 25 July 2020

Introduction

It came as a considerable blow to many that Portugal had once again been left off the UK’s travel corridor, with a similar decision being made by the Irish Government a few days earlier.

This means that the Foreign & Commonwealth Office continues to advise British nationals against all but essential international travel to Portugal amongst many other countries. It is important to note as in the case of Ireland and certain other countries, which have also imposed restrictions, that this does not mean one cannot travel, but in doing so you will need to go into 14 days quarantine, which is obviously not a practical situation for many travellers.

Reaction to this has obviously been one of disappointment, with claims of unfairness when one sees for instance Spain with vastly increasing figures, far higher than Portugal over the last two weeks.

We published the official news taken from GOV.UK on our Facebook rather than earlier news from the UK’s Telegraph newspaper which most subsequent news reports by the mainstream media, both in the UK and in Portugal, were based upon. Although delayed this ensured the news was more complete and accurate. We thank those who commented on our Facebook page for their restraint in their views and some even being positive in a very difficult circumstances.

Subsequent to our post Brits in Portugal Facebook page have published more details on the rationale behind this and I suggest therefore you read their page with any comments you may wish to make.

The only optimistic note from this that this will be reviewed weekly than previously, so we hope for the best at the next review.

The very hot weather continues and today there are eight Districts (see our separate post) where the emergency services are at a high orange state of readiness. Please as usual take care in avoid starting a fire and be extra careful in undertaking exercise outdoors.

As I said last week we have been reviewing our morning SITREPS which were introduced 5 months ago to help keep people up to date with Covid-19. These currently reach between 9000 to 13,000 people per daily issue. As can be seen over the last week there is decreasing news concerning Covid-19, but vastly increasing news concerning rural fires, which is part of the core responsibilities of Covid-19.

The production of these SITREPS is a major commitment and we have published around 150 editions, each containing 20 plus articles which makes in my estimation 3000 plus articles, more that many newspapers in Portugal.

Starting next week therefore we will be reducing the frequency of these and the details will be announced on Sunday. Off course any important or urgent news will be published as needed.  We hope you understand.

We hope you have a Safe weekend

Headlines

UK Travel Corridor

The UK yesterday updated its travel corridor list but Portugal remains off the list of countries that the government has exempted from quarantine restrictions.

In changes that apply to England, travellers from Estonia, Latvia, Slovakia, Slovenia and St Vincent and the Grenadines won’t have to quarantine.

This takes the number of countries that do not face quarantine on return to England to 80 nations.

The government also said it will update guidance weekly, meaning rules could change while people are away.

The Portuguese government expressed “regret” at the UK’s decision to continue to exclude it from the list of countries that are exempt from quarantine.

“It is a decision that is neither substantiated nor supported by the facts,” said Portugal’s Ministry of State and Foreign Affairs.

DGS Situation Report

The Directorate-General for Health (DGS) announced on Friday the existence of 1,712 deaths and 49,692 cases of covid-19 in Portugal, since the beginning of the pandemic.

The number of deaths rose, from Thursday by seven, while the number of infected people increased by 313.

In percentage terms, in the last 24 hours, the increase in deaths was 0.6% and that of confirmed cases was 0.4%. Lisbon and Vale do Tejo is the region where the increase in cases continues to be more significant, accounting for 80.8% of new cases, with 253 of the 313 accounted for.

In the Lisbon area, six out of seven fatal cases occurred since Thursday. The other death occurred in the Alentejo.

In number of cases, Lisbon and Vale do Tejo leads with 25,110, followed by the North region (18,415, with 26 new cases), the Center region (4,387, with five new cases), the Algarve (806 and 11 new cases) and the Alentejo (667, plus 14 cases).

Health

Covid-19 Majority of 4,000 infected health officials have recovered

More than 4,100 professionals have been infected with covid-19 since the start of the pandemic, but most have recovered, the health minister said yesterday.

The most recent data refers to 3,463 as already recovered,” said Marta Temido at the press conference to update information on covid-19.

On the question of the criterion of testing health professionals, Marta Temido stated that it is something that the authorities have “followed and that will probably still be in an evolution process”.

Present at the conference, Deputy Director-General for Health, Diogo Cruz, said that a norm on national testing policy is being reviewed, in which health professionals are “obviously included”.

“It is in a relatively advanced stage of its development, but I want to note that it is a testing policy that we are already planning in line with what the winter plan is,” said Diogo Cruz.

The idea will be “to make a national testing policy that tries to endure the winter, unless new scientific evidence appears and, as we know, with covid-19 it is very likely that they will appear”, he underlined.

Diogo Cruz did not advance the deadlines for when this will come out, saying only that it is “at a very advanced stage of its development” and hopes that it will be published soon.

Good results in fight against Covid-19 in Lisbon region

The Minister of Health said today that there are “good results” in the fight against covid-19 in the Lisbon region and that the national transmissibility ratio is 0.92, with an “evolution very favourable”.

At the follow-up press conference, Marta Temido stated that 198 outbreaks continue to be active across the country, most of them (127) in the Lisbon and Tagus Valley region, 40 in the North, 13 in the Centre, 13 in the Algarve and five in the Alentejo.

The minister admitted that reducing the numbers is “a slow, slow, difficult path” to which we must look “with prudence”, but stressed that “good results are beginning to emerge”.

Marta Temido indicated that in the region of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, where most of the new cases have appeared in the last few weeks, “the incidence in the last seven days registered a positive variation in three municipalities. In the last 14 days it maintains a downward trend in all municipalities, now registering values ​​between 90 to 120 new cases per hundred thousand inhabitants”.

In the whole country, there was an incidence rate in the last seven days of 15.7 new cases per 100 thousand inhabitants, which puts Portugal “in a very comfortable pattern” in relation to this indicator, “Although there is still a lot of work to do”, she stressed.

According to the assessment of the National Institute of Health Ricardo Jorge on the risk of transmission over time, “the evolution is very favourable”, standing at 0.92 for the days of 16-20 July, with confidence 95 percent.

The majority of active cases (68%) remain concentrated in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, but “have been decreasing”.

Study Reveals Low Percentage of Infection in Pregnant Women

A study by the Obstetrics Service of Centro Hospitalar Universitarios Lisboa Norte (CHULN), in April and May, revealed a low percentage of pregnant women in labour positive for covid-19 and all without symptoms disease.

The work, published in the ‘Journal of Maternal-Fetal & Neonatal, reveals that of the 428 asymptomatic pregnant women who were admitted to Hospital Santa Maria, between April 3 and May 31, and who performed the covid-19 test, only two did positive (0.47%).

 

 

Police Officers Infected

Thirty-four police officers are currently infected with covid-19 and 102 are in quarantine, to ensure that all police stations are “functioning normally” Public Security Police said yesterday

In a note on the state of the effects of covid-19 in the institution, the PSP points out that 185 elements have already returned to the service after being infected, 1,172 after having presented a negative result in the diagnostic test and 80 who were accompanying family members or other dependents.

In total and since the beginning of the pandemic, 1,437 PSP elements have returned to the service, including police and technicians without police functions,

This security force says that, following the prioritization guaranteed by the Ministry of Health to PSP personnel, the average number of quarantine days until the screening test is carried out is four days, “a condition of great importance to guarantee adequate protection ”And maintain“ operational capacity ”.

The PSP also indicates that “permanent account” with the support of the Portuguese Red Cross Hospital of the National Institute of Medical Emergency in carrying out tests to covid-19 to the personnel with functions in these police.

Pandemic Restrictions

AML Parishes “Likely” to finish State of Calamity

The president of the Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon (AML) said yesterday that the withdrawal of all or part of the parishes that are in a state of calamity within the scope of the pandemic is “probable”, should the situation continue to evolve positively.

“The evolution we have seen over the past few weeks has been a positive development in most municipalities in the metropolitan area and in the various parishes. This assessment will be made at the beginning of next week with the Government. If it is possible to register, during these next days a positive evolution, such as the one we have been registering, the most likely is in fact the removal of parishes from the list of the calamity situation ”, said Fernando Medina (PS).

The president of the Lisbon Metropolitan Area, who was speaking to journalists on the sidelines of the launch of a work under the Affordable Income Program in Entrecampos, argued that “the situation today is significantly better than it was a few weeks ago”.

“While we faced the risk a few weeks ago, and I mentioned several times, that the numbers could improve or they could get worse, when a few weeks pass with the numbers improving, it is natural that the situation changes”, defended Fernando Medina, also president Lisbon City Hall.

Most of mainland Portugal entered on July 1 in a situation of alert due to the pandemic of covid-19, with the exception of AML, which passed to the state of contingency.

Tourism

The resumption of tourism at an international level should happen during the spring and summer of 2021, according to the Tourism Barometer of IPDT – Instituto do Turismo, released today.

The average level of confidence in tourism performance reached 47.3 points in July, “an abrupt decrease compared to the last record of February 2020” when it reached 79.5 points, can be read in the 62nd edition of the Tourism Barometer.

“As expected, the overall results of national tourism for the summer of 2020 will be severely penalized due to the impact caused by the covid-19 pandemic,” the document reads.

According to the barometer, “in international terms, the recovery is expected to happen during the spring and summer of 2021” according to about 80% of respondents.

The data indicate, however, that the resumption of activities in the sector will be faster internally.

As for external demand, the data indicate “a considerable decrease” in 2020, with “a sharp upturn starting in April 2021”.

“Despite the crisis of confidence that affected the travel sector, the Portuguese should continue to travel within the country, with domestic tourism demand remaining very close to the levels recorded in 2019”, concludes the barometer.

Respondents expressed optimism about the Spanish market, with one in five respondents believing it possible to achieve, in the last six months of 2020, “results equal to or greater than those recorded by this market in the same period of 2019”.

Nature (34%) and beach (31.4%) destinations will lead the choice of destinations for summer holidays in 2020 and health and well-being will also be at the top of the choices.

Madeira

Covid-19 Madeira registers three more cases

Madeira has recorded three new cases of covid-19 in the last 24 hours, bringing the number of active patients to 10 and the total recorded in the archipelago to 105, the Institute of Administration of Health (IASAÚDE).

“Today, there are three new positive cases for covid-19 to be reported in the region, three of whom are residents of the municipality of Machico [east side of the island], who were being monitored by the health authorities for being close contacts of a case recently diagnosed imported positive “, said IASAÚDE vice president, Bruna Gouveia, in videoconference, in Funchal.

The archipelago now records a total of 105 confirmed cases, of which 95 are recovered. The first case was reported on March 16.

“The 10 cases of active infection consist of seven cases imported and identified in the context of the surveillance activities implemented at the Covid-19 Screening Unit at Madeira Airport and three are the cases currently notified of local transmission”, said Bruna Gouveia.

The head of IASAÚDE explained that these three people are all from the same household and shared the home.

Eight of the active patients are in isolation in a hotel unit requested by the Regional Government and two remain at home, without the need for hospital care.

Bruna Gouveia indicated, on the other hand, that 11,513 travellers have already been subjected to the covid-19 test at Madeira and Porto Santo airports, out of a total of about 21,000 that disembarked since the screening operation took effect on July 1.

On this date, the Regional Government, of the PSD / CDS-PP coalition, replaced the quarantine regime with the obligation for passengers to present a negative test carried out up to 72 hours before the start of the trip, or else to do it on arrival.

Travelers are also monitored through an application, called ‘MadeiraSaveToDiscover’, in which more than 30,000 people are already registered.

Currently, 11,303 people are being monitored by the archipelago’s health authorities, of whom 4,767 are under active surveillance.

Algarve

Covid-19 Statistics

The District Civil Protection Commission of Faro today revealed in a statement, based on data provided by the Health Authority, that there are 242 active cases in the Algarve.

So far 808 infected people have been registered, plus 5 in the last 24 hours with 549 recovered, equivalent to 67.9%.

10 people are hospitalized, 5 in the Intensive Care Units. The same source reports 17 deaths in the region. Under active surveillance are 589 people and 88 patients were discharged from hospital.

In relation to the bulletin sent last Friday, July 17, 10 fewer active cases in the region are confirmed, plus 45 cases from Covid.19 and another 35 recovered.

There is less 1 hospitalization, but 2 more in intensive care. The number of deaths is maintained (17). Under active surveillance there are fewer 119 people.

Another 5 patients were discharged from hospital.

President Regional Tourism Algarve reaction to travel corridor

The president of the Algarve Tourism Region (RTA) hopes that the British Government’s decision to keep Portugal off the list of safe destinations for travel , known today, will be “finally corrected next week, as updates to that list seem to be weekly ”.

“There are changes all the time on the part of the British Government, let us hope that they finally get it right,” said João Fernandes, speaking to Sul Informação .

The official stressed that this is a decision that the RTA regrets and that “cannot be matched in what is the testimony, through many channels and in many ways, of those who know us best, who are the British who live among us”.

It is also not the opinion of “those who visit us and continue to visit”, he added, recalling that “we have connections to twenty airports in the United Kingdom that continue to operate since mid-June, with normality”.

“83% of British overnight stays in Portugal, at this time of year, happen in the Algarve and Madeira, which are specially prepared regions and with lower epidemiological rates than many of the countries that place travel restrictions on Portugal», he explained.

Reaction by president AHETA

The President of the Association of Hotels and Tourist Enterprises of the Algarve, said yesterday that the decision of the United Kingdom Government to maintain the exclusion of Portugal from the list of safe destinations, and for this reason to force passengers to quarantine, “is a huge disappointment”.

For Elidérico Viegas, the expectation was that the British would reverse the situation. The representative of the Algarve hoteliers, said that the numbers are not encouraging for the hotel industry, with similar activities such as the restaurant and tourist companies, also feeling the effects of the scarcity of British tourists He feared that the measure to remain if, “it not only compromises the activity in the high season, but also in the tourist golf sector, which starts from September and develops until November, being another important sector for the region’s economy”.

The president of AHETA, stresses that it would be positive if the measure were reversed, noting that in these assessments by the British Government “there appear to be criteria other than the pandemic”. As a result, he asks Portuguese diplomacy, to sweeten the decisions, “we know that some work has been done, probably more needs to be done”.

Elidérico Viegas speaks of an “atypical summer”, and recalls that the Algarve region is a safe destination, “since the hotel units reopened, no outbreaks in hotels have been heard, precisely because there is this care to be safe places” , concluded.

Other countries maintain restrictions on travellers from Portugal, such as Austria, Ireland, Norway, Denmark, Finland or Belgium.

Situation Report Azores 24th July – 25th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores 

The UK Government announced, yesterday, that existing UK restrictions on travel between the UK and Portugal (including the autonomous regions of Madeira and the Azores) will remain in place for the time being.  In particular, the requirement to ‘self-isolate’ for fourteen days on arrival in the UK from Portugal, remains in place. It’s understood by the authorities that this is a ‘disappointing outcome’ for many people in both countries.

Meanwhile, the Regional Health Authority has reported that, following 968 tests, carried out in the region in the last 24 hours, 1 new ‘positive’ case of COVID-19 on the island of São Miguel has been diagnosed.  It’s a 24-year-old man from outside the ‘Archipelago’ who flew into the region from the continent on July the 22nd.  His first test was ‘inconclusive’ but following a ‘retest’, he was declared as ‘positive’.

So, the ‘Archipelago’ has had a total of 162 ‘infections’ since the outbreak began on March the 15th.  There are currently just nine ‘active’ cases; 7 on the island of São Miguel, 1 on Flores and 1 on Terceira.

 

Portugal Situation report Friday 24th  July

Introduction

We start on a positive note and that is that the number of fires that occurred this year up until July 15 is the second lowest in the last ten years and the burnt area has the fifth lowest value, according to provisional data released on Thursday. The total of 3383 fires recorded is 36% less than the same period last.

Given that the weather conditions are such that a Situation of Calamity was recently issued, let us hope that this trend continues. Yesterday the number of rural fires registered was 137 the lowest for over a week.

A reminder, if needed, is that the very hot weather continues, with the districts of Castelo Branco, Portalegre, Évora, Beja and Faro remaining under yellow warning today according to the IPMA – so please take care.

 

We have been monitoring over the last week, the daily growth in the number of Covid-19 cases in Spain. A week ago they were lower than Portugal’s whereas yesterday, at 971 they are four times higher. This shows that trends can change very quickly, making it very difficult for countries to apply travel restrictions, without having to change them a short while later.

On that issue there is inevitably much speculation on whether or not Portugal will be added by the UK to its travel corridor list, or whether it will establish so called regional air bridges. Although some media are stating as headlines that the UK “will do this” or “do that” – the truth is that they do not know. At Safe Communities we will therefore not spend time responding to questions on our Facebook page on this, so please do not comment with links to news articles which will only result in lengthy speculative debate. We wait and see for the official announcement and hope that it is positive for Portugal, as the tourism economy depends on this a great deal.

What is very important is that when more tourists do inevitably arrive here, they fully respect our laws concerning facemasks, social distancing and hygiene that are in place. Portugal has set a good example in terms of compliance, whereas in some other countries the rules are more in terms of advice, which as we seen, are often ignored. Visitors are very welcome but as we have said many times follow the rules!

With that have a very Safe Day.

Covid-19 Statistics

Portugal yesterday registered three more deaths and 229 new cases of infection by covid-19 in relation to Wednesday, according to the daily bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS).

According to the bulletin, since the beginning of the pandemic up until yesterday, there have been 49,379 confirmed cases of infection and 1,705 deaths.

Lisbon and the Vale do Tejo, where there are more active outbreaks, now totals 24,857 cases, 172 more infected than the day before and two more dead.

In percentage terms, since Wednesday, the increase in deaths was 0.2% (from 1,702 to 1,705) and that of confirmed cases was 0.5% (from 49,150 to 49,379).

Lisbon and Vale do Tejo is the region where the increase in cases continues to be more significant, accounting for 75% of new cases, with 172 of the 229 accounted for. In the Lisbon area, there were two of the three fatal cases recorded since Wednesday. The other death occurred in the North.

In terms of confirmed cases, Lisbon and Vale do Tejo leads with 24,857, followed by the North region (18,415, with 25 new cases), the Center region (4,387, with eight new cases), the Algarve (806 and 10 new cases) and the Alentejo (653, plus 17 cases).

Health

Researchers do not support use of Hydroxychloroquine as Treatment

The administration of hydroxychloroquine for the treatment of covid-19 has no visible antiviral effects in human cells, despite some response in tests carried out on monkeys, according to a study published in the scientific Journal Nature.

According to the group of researchers responsible for the research, “hydroxychloroquine showed antiviral activity in renal cells of the African green monkey, but not in a model of human airway epithelium”. Therefore, the research defends, in the conclusions, “not to support its use as an antiviral agent for the treatment of covid-19 in humans”.

The negative evaluation of the effects of this substance on humans comes after being used in several countries as a therapy for those hospitalised. Hydroxychloroquine gained special media coverage when the President of the United States, Donald Trump, assumed to take it prophylactically and because the head of State of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro, announced that he was taking it after being infected with the new coronavirus.

The study also reveals that it tested hydroxychloroquine at different times, that is, before infection, at an early stage before the peak viral load and even after reaching the maximum viral load. However, the various administration timings “did not demonstrate antiviral activity or clinical efficacy”, even when used as pre-exposure prophylaxis to the virus, since “it did not provide protection against the acquisition of infection”.

The researchers went even further and also ruled out the effectiveness of hydroxychloroquine when combined with azithromycin.

Pandemic Restrictions

Conditions for two parishes to end State of Calamity

The Mayor of Loures, Bernardino Soares, stated yesterday that the conditions are met so that the two parishes in the municipality that have more restrictive measures can come out of the calamity situation next week.

“If the downward trajectory [this week] is confirmed, both in the number of active cases and in the number of new daily cases, I believe that the conditions are created for our parishes to leave the state of calamity”, said the communist mayor.

Bernardino Soares said that at the moment in the entire municipality of Loures, about 350 cases are active, “a number much lower” than those that have already occurred.

“The latest figures point to an average of 19 daily cases, well below the 30, 40, 50 that we had in other weeks. Therefore, the situation is quite normalized”, he stressed.

Despite considering that the conditions are met for the two parishes to leave the situation of calamity, the mayor stressed that “the decision will obviously be the Government’s”.

“We will continue to have covid-19 in our territory and we will have to continue to work and keep the teams on the ground, but I think we are already at a level where we can deal with this without being in a state of calamity”, he insisted.

Next Monday, the Government will meet with the presidents of the five municipalities of AML with parishes in a state of calamity to discuss and decide whether or not to extend this measure.

The majority of mainland Portugal entered on July 1 in a situation of alert due to the pandemic of covid-19, with the exception of AML, which passed to the state of contingency.

Travel

Lisbon City Council proposes Electronic System for Passenger Location Card

The Lisbon City Council today approved a motion by the CDS-PP, signed by PS and PSD, for “more security” for citizens to enter by air and sea, defending an electronic system for the passenger location card.

In a council meeting, the motion that advocates “more security of access to the national territory by air and sea and greater efficiency in support systems” was approved by a majority, registering the votes against the councillors of the PCP, João Ferreira and Ana Jara, and BE Councilman Manuel Grilo abstained.

Thus, the Lisbon City Council will recommend to the Government and the Directorate-General for Health (DGS) the “creation of an electronic system or application that allows the de-materialized filling and sending of the passenger location card”.

“In addition to the rules already in force for third countries, it is recommended that the Government, within the scope of circulation in the Schengen Area, defend the criterion of the requirement of a negative test prior to the trip as a general criterion”, reads in the motion approved by the Lisbon city council executive.

In addition to these recommendations, the motion determines the request to the Government and DGS to provide data on “the number of people infected with covid-19 who have travelled on flights to Portugal since February 1, 2020” and the number of credit cards passenger location received since that date, as well as the number of contacts established with passengers who completed the passenger location card, following the identification of positive cases of covid-19 on flights to Portugal.

Leisure

GNR Registered 167 offenses for Camping or Caravanning in Prohibited Places

This year GNR registered 167 offences regarding camping or caravanning, as well as any form of overnight stays outside the designated places, 89 of which were in Faro District (Algarve).

Faro was the district with the highest number of fines, with 89, followed by Setúbal, with 53, Beja (20), Leiria (2) and Braga, Castelo Branco and Portalegre, with one each.

According to GNR, the practice of camping or caravanning outside the designated places, as well as any form of overnight stay, constitutes a an environmental offense, punishable by a minimum fine of 200 euros.

The GNR ,as stated, has within the scope of its competences, the special task of supervising violations of all rules applicable to parking and overnight stays with motorhomes.

According to the statement, patrolling by the Environmental Protection Units of Territorial Detachments “has been able to effectively mitigate the impacts caused by this type of conduct, in protected areas”.

Pandemic Causes Increase in Cyber Attacks

The supervisory board of the SIS admits that the pandemic accelerated the “record of cyber-attacks” in the first half of the year to “as a means of espionage, sabotage, subversion and crime” organized and serious”.

The evaluation, without further details, given that it is an unclassified document, is made in the report of the first half of 2020 of the Supervisory Board of the Republic’s Information System (CFSIRP), dated July 15, published on its website, in the part where it analyzes the performance of the Security Information Service (SIS).

Given that the last report, referring to 2019, is from April, and given “the very peculiar situation” caused by the pandemic, the board chose to reaffirm “the assessments, concerns and proposals” in this document, and to focus attention on the challenges faced by services by the epidemic outbreak that affects the world since the beginning of the year.

And he reaffirms that “the covid-19 must be seen as a national security issue”, with all the consequences for the need for answers by the intelligence services, in Portugal and in the world.

The pandemic times, the text reads, “exponentially accelerated (as was perfectly predictable) the registration of cyber-attacks”, also as a means of espionage, sabotage, subversion and organized and serious crime”.

Spain records nearly one thousand new cases in a day

Spain recorded 971 cases of people infected with the new coronavirus in the last 24 hours, a further increase after the sharp rise to 730 contagions seen on Thursday, according to data from the Spanish Ministry of Health.

The report released today with the epidemiological situation updated the total number of people infected since the beginning of the pandemic to 270,166, of which 971 were diagnosed on the last day, the highest number since the end of the state of emergency, a month ago.

The autonomous community of Aragon is the region with the most new cases seen on the last day (415), followed by Catalonia (182), Madrid (102) and Navarra (66).

There are now 28,429 the total number of deaths due to the pandemic, of which three in the last 24 hours and seven in the last seven days.

Other news

Rural fires 2020 – Second lowest in 10 years

The number of fires that occurred this year up until July 15 is the second lowest in the last ten years and the burnt area has the fifth lowest value, according to provisional data released this Thursday.

The report by the Institute for the Conservation of Nature and Forests (ICNF) indicates that between 1 January and 15 July, 3383 fires broke out, 1907 less (36% less) than fire occurrences recorded in the same period last year, when 5290 had occurred.

According to the ICNF, the flames consumed 9482 hectares (ha) up until July 15, between stands (3396 ha), scrub (3123 ha) and agriculture (2963 ha), a reduction of about 6% (minus 702 ha) in relation to the same period in 2019.

“Comparing the values ​​of the year 2020 with the history of the previous 10 years, it is noted that there was 54% less rural fires and 54% less burnt area compared to the annual average of the period”, says the report, stressing that 2020 presents, until the 15th of July, “the second lowest value in number of fires and the fifth lowest value of burnt area since 2010”.

ICNF provisional data up to July 15 also indicates that the largest number of fires occurred in the districts of Porto (796), Aveiro (266) and Viseu (242), but, in any case, they are mostly small in size and do not exceed one hectare of burnt area.

Regional reports

Madeira

Testing for Covid-19 now available in Vila Real when travelling to Madeira

Since July 1, passengers wishing to travel to the Autonomous Region of Madeira can take the PCR test in continental Portugal, free of charge, in Lisbon, Coimbra, Porto and now also in Vila Real.

The protocol was signed between the Regional Government, through the Health Administration Institute with the Center for the Study of Chronic Diseases (CEDOC) in Lisbon, with the Clinical Analysis laboratory of the University of Coimbra, in Porto, and in Vila Real with the Northern Regional Health Administration (ARS Norte).

In the case of CEDOC, interested parties have been able to do this since July 1st, in Coimbra since July 13th, in Porto since July 21st and in Vila Real since July 22nd.

In all situations, interested parties only have to present a copy of their electronic ticket or travel receipt.

In the case of Lisbon, the passenger must contact CEDOC, by phone, email and / or using the mentioned form, to schedule the test (Contacts: 910459769 / email: diagnostico.covid@nms.unl.pt).

In the case of Coimbra, it is possible to test at a Health Center or at the University of Coimbra. Schedules are from 9 am to 8 pm, on working days, and from 2 pm to 8 pm, at the weekend. Interested parties can schedule their test through the phone: 239 240800.

In the case of Porto, interested parties may request the sample collection schedule through one of the following modalities: Sending an email to adc.pocidental@arsnorte.min-saude.pt with the following data: name; SNS user number; date of birth; mobile number; email contact; destination address; copy of electronic ticket and / or travel receipt. Test location: Rua da Constitution, 1656 | 4250-162 Porto (ADC PORTO OCIDENTAL).

In the case of Vila Real, it is possible to carry out the PCR test for covid-19, free of charge, through the following contacts: Scheduling the test through email: adc.vreal@arsnorte.min-saude.pt. Test location: Vila Real ADC – Vila Real Health Center nº 2 | Rua 3 Lagares, Quinta da Redonda – Mateus | 5000-577 Vila Real (ADC VILA REAL)

This measure is part of the regional strategy to contain and prevent covid-19 in the Region.

No water in some areas of São Gonçalo

The Funchal City Council informs that, today, Friday, July 24, due to an urgent and urgent intervention in the Boa Nova water network, in the parish of São Gonçalo, it will be necessary to interrupt the water supply, between  9 am and 4 pm, in the following streets: Estrada da Boa Nova; Ladeira da Fonte and Caminho da Fonte.

The municipality thanks everyone for their understanding.

Algarve

Irish ‘will continue’ to travel to the Algarve, even with Portugal off the green list

João Fernandes, president of the Algarve Tourism Region, believes that the Irish “will continue” to seek the Algarve, because “the decision does not change the possibility of traveling”.

According to João Fernandes, “the rules that are now in force remain» and Faro Airport “maintains six routes, with two airlines, to five Irish cities”.

The official considers that the occupation of the flights “has been doing quite well, given the circumstances. We know that both these flights, as well as flights from the United Kingdom, have occupancy rates less achieved than other markets, but we are talking about rates that are making operations feasible”.

Therefore, João Fernandes believes that the Irish “will continue to travel” to the Algarve, even though they have to be subject to quarantine on their return to their country.

“The Irish have a strong connection to the Algarve. It is one of our top five markets. There are a lot of people with investments in the region who spend most of the year here. I think that, due to this decision [by the Irish government], there will be no changes in the demand that currently exists”, since the flights were resumed.

The chairman of Turismo do Algarve also stresses that “the list in Ireland is much more restrictive than those drawn up by other countries” and that “the Government, despite having approved this list, continues to advise to avoid non-essential trips”.

Marcelo promised and will go to Boliqueime to visit the elderly at the Santa Casa home

The President of the Republic will be in Loulé on Sunday, the 26th, to, as promised, visit the nursing home of Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Loulé, where the most lethal focus of Covid-19 in the region was registered.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa will personally greet residents and employees of the institution, to whom he had already sent a message of “friendship and gratitude” during a video call that he maintained with Sílvia Sebastião, the SCM provider in Boliqueime.

At the time, the head of state was invited to visit the home – after he said that he expected to go there and that he expected an invitation – and will now be present at the institution, where five deaths due to Covid-19 were recorded, all of residents, and there were four dozen infected, mostly elderly, but also some employees.

The visit program also includes a session at the Igreja Matriz de Boliqueime and a dinner in Querença.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 23rd July – 24th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

A survey of users of the “Azores Health Line” (808 24 60 24) during the first half of 2020, showed that 97% of Azoreans who’d contacted the service are ‘very satisfied’ with the level of support, provided.

Between January and June this year, more than 98% of the people who contacted the Azores Health Line followed the instructions given by nurses and did not need to resort to more help or differentiated care after the initial assessment made by telephone.

The survey also said that about 97% of users, in the future, would use the Azores Health Line as a resource instead of going immediately to a health unit, a fact that Teresa Machado Luciano, the Regional Health Secretary, considered to be “very positive, as she confirmed that the service is corresponding to one of its main objective”.

Meanwhile, the Health Authority reports that 1,023 tests were carried out in the last 24 hours but there have been no new ‘positive’ cases of “COVID-19”.

So, the ‘Archipelago’ has had a total of 161 ‘infections’ since the outbreak began on March the 15th.  There are currently just eight ‘active’ cases; 6 on the island of São Miguel, 1 on Flores and 1 on Terceira.

 

Portugal Situation Report 23rd July 2020

Introduction

We start on a sombre note from the WHO that Vaccines against Covid-19 should only appear in the second half of 2021.

Michael Ryan said yesterday that “realism in expectations” is needed in relation to a vaccine and that “every precaution” will have to be taken to ensure that it is absolutely safe. The head of the World Health Organization’s Sanitary Emergencies program said today that there will be no vaccines for covid-19 before the second half of 2021, despite “signs of hope” in ongoing clinical trials.

This means that we will almost certainly be wearing facemasks and adopting all the other hygiene measures and social distancing for some time to come. As the Prime Minister has previous said – this is a long haul.

Yesterday we learned the news that Portugal is one of the countries that has not been included in the Irish green light travel category, which would have avoided quarantine for arriving passengers. This was met with disappointment not only here, but also by the Irish Prime minister Taoiseach Michael Martin who said it is impossible to enforce mandatory quarantine for people arriving in Ireland, even for those who come from countries that are not on the newly published green list.

All eyes of course are on the UK’s decision expected on 27th July.

Today we are seeing a reduction in the fire risk throughout the country with around 60 municipalities at maximum level, although many at Very High. Yesterday there were 165 fires, lower than the previous day, including one in Abrantes, Sanarém which mobilised over 400 operatives. This was brought under control at 2100 hrs. Again excellent work in controlling these fires before they spread and shows the value of air support.

The hot weather continues however, with eight districts at yellow high temperature warning, so please ensure that if taking exercise outside avoid the hottest temperatures of the day and consume plenty of water.

Lastly on a good note and a major tourism attraction is the CP will commence operation of the Douro historic steam train on 1st August. Great for railway buffs! See our article in this report.

 

With that happy note – Have a good Day

DGS Situation Report

In the last 24 hours, Portugal adds five more deaths caused by covid-19 and 252 new cases, with over 230 patients recovered. The number of confirmed cases rose compared with the previous two days.

In total, there are now 1702 deaths and 49,150 infected to date.

Of the five deaths one was a man in his sixties and three men and a woman were aged 80 or over. A total of four were recorded in the region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley.

Health

Confirmed Covid-19 case leaves fire brigade inactive in Bragança

The fire department of the Vila de Izeda, in Bragança, is inactive because an element of the corporation tested positive for Covid-19.

A portion of the corporation’s 38 firefighters, including the commander, are in prophylactic isolation. The barracks has its doors closed, because “it is not possible (…) to guarantee the operation of the corporation”.

Only at the end of the week will it be possible to know who will be able to return to work.

The infected firefighter, 30, is said to have been infected by his brother who returned from Andorra. These are the only two positive cases in the last 24 hours in the Bragança district.

In addition to this focus, there are three more outbreaks in the region.

Portugal has already carried out almost 1.5 million tests

Portugal has already carried out 1.48 million tests on Covid-19, said the Assistant Secretary of State and Health, Jamila Madeira, at the press conference on the evolution of the pandemic in the country.

The Secretary of State pointed out that the tests carried out increased in July compared to June, registering a daily average of 13,670 tests this month.

At the same time, the laboratory network increased from 20 to 98 laboratories in July, with a presence throughout the territory. “This expansion of laboratory capacity has been decisive in the effective response to the pandemic and this year will be substantially reinforced with the new investment, as foreseen in the Economic and Social Stabilization Program and accommodated in the Supplementary Budget”, he said.

Jamila Madeira also said that the reinforcement already foreseen for intensive medicine, human resources, public health means and computer systems, in addition to the increase in the initial health budget for 2020, show “a clear option for the robustness and capacity of the National Service to respond, in the face of the challenge of the pandemic and the provision of other health care.

Covid-19: 34 cases detected in a meat processing company in Tomar

An outbreak of covid-19 was detected on Tuesday at a meat processing company in Tomar, with 34 infected among the approximately 200 employees, and the facilities were closed to control the contagion, advances the municipality.

In a statement, the Câmara de Tomar, in the district of Santarém, states that “so far 34 employees have tested positive for covid-19” in Ribasabores and that, “following a proposal from the health delegate”, it was decided to “close the company, after all workers have tested “for the new coronavirus.

“The municipal social services are, since the beginning of the afternoon, making the social and family diagnoses of the cases, to do the screening […] and the proper monitoring of the necessary cases”, it can also be read in the note.

The company Ribasabores is headquartered in the Parque Empresarial de Tomar.

Of the 200 or so employees, about half took the test as early as Tuesday, with the first results coming in the evening, with 34 positive cases. The rest were testing today, pending the results.

Covid-19 Ministry of Health ensures that there is no shortage of drugs in pharmacies

The Assistant Secretary of State for Health and Health assured today that there is no shortage of medicines in pharmacies due to the restrictions imposed by the pandemic, with a reserve that is monitored every day.

“There is no shortage [of drugs] worthy of registration,” said Jamila Madeira, at the press conference to monitor the pandemic of covid-19.

The official explained that there is a “strategic reserve”, which is “monitored daily”.

Asked about the unavailability of the drug “victan”, the Assistant Secretary of State and Health clarified that there is a “temporary unavailability to supply the market”, with the National Medicines Authority- Infarmed “making every effort to replace this medicine ”.

However, he explained that “there is alternative therapy”, with guidance from Infarmed and the National Commission of Pharmacy and Therapeutics to health professionals to adopt “alternative therapy or alternative non-pharmacological therapies”.

The National Medicines Authority (Infarmed) announced, on Tuesday, that the drug indicated for anxiety and nervous symptoms “Victan 2mg” is unavailable on the market, pointing to the “probable date” for its replacement in the fourth quarter of this year.

896,000 fewer hospital consultations were carried out by June

Until June, hospitals had 896,000 fewer consultations and primary health care less 1.1 million, but last month’s data already shows some improvement in the recovery of assistance activity, said the Minister of Health.

“We already have June with provisional data closed showing some improvement” even without the exceptional incentive regime for the recovery of assistance activity not carried out because of the pandemic of covid-19, under the terms of the Economic and Social Stabilization Program. Social, said Marta Temido in the Health Commission.

The accumulated data for May indicated around 900 thousand hospital consultations and “in June we have already recovered a bit” and it was “a particularly difficult month”, especially in large hospitals in Lisbon and Vale do Tejo due to the number of cases of covid-19.

“Of course there are many [consultations], but it never hurts to stress that we are talking about 896 thousand fewer consultations in a system that produces 12 million consultations per year”, emphasized Marta Temida at the hearing required by the PSD on the “Annual Report of Access to Health Care in SNS Establishments and Conventional Entities – 2018 “.

Regarding primary health care, the minister said that they are “recovering a lot thanks to what non-face-to-face consultations are”, having in June less than 1.1 million consultations in a system that produced 31 million consultations in 2019.

The minister stressed that these data are the result of “an extraordinary effort” that is being asked of health professionals and the NHS.

North Medical Association advocates timely preparation of the NHS for winter

The president of the Order of Doctors North area, defended this Wednesday that the authorities should prepare the National Health Service (SNS) for winter needs, suggesting the return of field hospitals to respond to covid-19.

The possibility that [in winter] the number of infected people and the number of patients in need of care will increase is a very real risk.

The authorities, namely the ARS-N [Regional Health Administration of the North], should already be planning the winter. It is essential to start thinking about internments in the winter, in eventual rear hospitals so that if there is an excessive number of internments we can allocate the least serious ones to these spaces. Whether by flu or by covid-19, important is that we are prepared for the winter “, said António Araújo.

The president of the Order of Doctors of the North, who was speaking to journalists on the sidelines of a visit to Hospital Magalhães Lemos, in Porto, called for “timely preparation” for “the worst that could happen”, but at the same time he showed himself optimistic about the current numbers related to the new coronavirus pandemic.

“In the North, the numbers are perfectly controlled. There is no increase in the number of hospitalizations, on the contrary, this number has remained more or less stable and in very low numbers, both in terms of general hospitalization and in terms of hospitalization. in intensive care “, he said.

Airlines

Covid-19 – TAP accused of violating passenger rights

The European Consumer Organization (BEUC) today accused eight European airlines, including TAP Portugal, of violating passengers’ rights as a result of trips cancelled due to covid-19, calling for a “broad investigation in the sector”.

“Following thousands of airline passenger complaints, BEUC – and 11 of its member organizations – have reported some major airlines [in Europe] to national consumer protection authorities and the European Commission for violating passengers’ rights and for using unfair commercial practices ”, informs the structure in a statement released today.

This is because, according to the Brussels-based organization, “since the beginning of the covid-19 crisis, some of the biggest European airlines have been failing to refund passengers and to provide clear and complete information about their rights”.

And, while pointing out the existence of “unfair practices across the sector” following the interruption of air travel due to the pandemic, BEUC points out that TAP, as well as Aegean, Air France, EasyJet, KLM, Norwegian, Ryanair and Transavia, “are among the companies with the highest number of consumer complaints”.

“While we recognize that the pandemic has created major challenges for the travel industry, providing wrong information and misleading consumers about their rights is not acceptable,” underlines BEUC, calling for “extensive research in the sector regarding unfair practices that were widespread during the last months”.

Passengers who entered Portugal without testing were identified by SEF

Secretary of State for Health adds that these cases, of passengers who arrived without a negative test and refused to do so at the airport, are “residual” and have been identified by SEF.

Citizens from countries outside the Schengen area who entered Portugal without any proof of a negative test to Covid-19 were identified by the Foreigners and Borders Service for further contact, advanced the Secretary of State for Health, Jamila Madeira, in a conference of press.

Asked about the cases of citizens who, according to Diário de Notícias , refused to take the test on arrival, at the airport, at their own expense, Jamila Madeira guaranteed that the number of cases is “absolutely marginal”, that they were identified and will be contacted by health authorities.

In addition, Jamila Madeira revealed that these passengers completed the “Passenger Location Card” (PLC), which gathers all the data about where they passed and with which passengers they contacted during the flight.

Tourism

Historic Douro train will run on Saturdays in August and September

The historic Douro train starts on 1 August and the trip is repeated every Saturday until 26 September, CP announced today.

CP source – Comboios de Portugal told the Lusa agency that on August 1 it will launch the historic train, which runs along the Douro line, with nine trips expected to take place until September 26.

According to the company, due to the guidelines resulting from the current public health situation, caused by covid-19, the trips will be carried out with “capacity limited to two thirds of its capacity”, with “all the procedures and rules defined are guaranteed pandemic prevention”.

“Despite these constraints, CP decided to invest in this campaign to support the return of tourism to the Douro region and provide the population with the opportunity to live a unique travel experience through the landscape classified by UNESCO as World Heritage”, he said.

The composition includes five wooden carriages, dating from the beginning of the 20th century and the steam locomotive, running along the usual route, between Peso da Régua (Vila Real district) and Tua (Bragança district) stations, stopping at Pinhão village.

The company said that the program starts at Régua station and, before boarding, traditional songs from the region and a toast of Port wine will welcome customers.

The ticket price on the historic Douro train varies between 42.50 euros for adults and 20 euros for children.

Spain

COVID-19: Number of new cases soars to 730 in Spain

Spain recorded 730 cases of people infected with the new coronavirus in the last 24 hours, a sharp increase of 201 more infections compared to 529 on Tuesday, according to data from the Spanish Ministry of Health.

The report released today with the epidemiological situation updated the total number of people infected since the beginning of the pandemic to 267,551, of which 730 were diagnosed on the last day, the highest number since the end of the state of emergency, a month ago.

The autonomous community of Aragon is the region with the most new cases seen on the last day (309), followed by that of Navarra (132), Madrid (70) and Catalonia (58).

On the other hand, there are now 28,426 the total number of deaths due to the pandemic, of which two in the last 24 hours and 12 in the last seven days.

Spain has 224 active outbreaks of covid-19, 23 more than two days ago, with 2,622 positive cases of the disease associated, the majority of which are under control, Spanish Health Minister Salvador Illa said today.

The government official explained in the Spanish parliament that most outbreaks are linked to the activity of picking the fruit and to areas where preventive measures are neglected, such as the family environment and nightlife.

Region Reports

Madeira Situation report

Covid 19 Statistics

The Region has so far recorded 102 confirmed cases of covid-19, of which 94 are recovered cases and 8 are active cases.

The 8 active cases consist of imported cases identified in the context of the surveillance activities implemented at the Covid-19 Screening Unit at Madeira Airport.

To date, 10,956 people are being accompanied by the health authorities of the various counties in the Region, using the MadeiraSafeToDiscover application.

4,722 of these people are under active surveillance.

Jamie Filipe Ramos – Madeira has been abandoned by Lisbon

The leader of the PSD parliamentary bench again criticized the options of the Government of the Republic and said that “Madeira has been abandoned by Lisbon”.

“It was more important to guarantee the pot of gold to Mário Centeno” or to inject 1.2 billion euros into TAP “than to respond to the needs of Madeirans”, he said, mentioning that the Region is assuming “alone” the costs with the Covid-19.

“If Portugal is clamouring – and rightly – for foreign aid, at least it should set an example and help all regions”, he criticized, demanding “lost funds and new ways” to overcome the installed crisis.

For the leader of the PSD parliamentary bench, all the answers that exist to combat the covid-19 are within the proposal of the supplementary budget.

“This is not the time to falter. Nor for lyricism. This is one of the times when courage, determination and stability are needed”, so “Madeira more than ever needs this parliamentary majority to mitigate fear”, he said.

Algarve

UK studies Algarve method of combating Covid-19

Scientists from the UK Science & Innovation Network Office have met with the Algarve Biomedical Centre (ABC) with the aim of implementing, in the United Kingdom, the pool method that allows analysis to be carried out “more quickly and cheaply”.

The news was advanced by the newspaper the Telegraph which, in its edition of last Sunday, 19 July, wrote that the United Kingdom “turned to Portugal” and to its “massive tests” strategy to Covid-19.

Is that this method, writes the newspaper that can “help prevent the progress of the disease, reducing the number of deaths”.

Nuno Marques, president of ABC, explained to Sul Informação that he met with British scientists met, in June, with the Algarve Biomedical Centre to “explain our pooling protocol” to them, developed by this consortium that joins the Centro Hospitalar Universitário do Algarve (CHUA) and the University of Algarve (UAlg).

For Nuno Marques, this international interest (there have also been meetings with Spanish, Italian and Polish entities) is proof of the work that ABC has been developing in the fight against Covid-19.

“It is an acknowledgment for ABC and for our work, mainly because we are combining the issue of research with its practical execution”, he considered.

And this interest comes even from countries that excluded Portugal from the list of safe countries … like the United Kingdom. This decision, said Nuno Marques, was made using only “a single indicator: the number of cases per 100 thousand inhabitants”.

 

Integrated Medical Emergency System reinforces seasonal ambulances in the Algarve

The Integrated Medical Emergency System (SIEM) has been reinforced with eight seasonal ambulances to increase the response capacity in regions of the country where the population increases in the summer, announced today the National Institute of Medical Emergency (INEM).

In a statement sent to the newsrooms, INEM explains that the measure was implemented through seasonal protocols with eight entities: the volunteer firefighters of Terras de Bouro, Grândola, Canha and Albufeira, and the delegations of the Portuguese Red Cross (CVP) of Vilar Formoso, Faro-Loulé, Silves-Albufeira and Olhão.

Stressing that these partnerships ensure the action of an emergency ambulance 24 hours a day with the necessary crew, INEM assumes the payment of expenses and also defends that these protocols seek to “guarantee a better response to situations of accident or sudden illness”.

SIEM, which is coordinated by INEM, is made up of 364 Medical Emergency Posts (PEM) distributed over 308 municipalities in Portugal, with ambulances assigned to their service, in addition to 56 medical emergency ambulances and another 40 for immediate life support, and a set of multidisciplinary medical emergency means, with 44 emergency and resuscitation medical vehicles and four helicopters.

Covid.19: Uninfected construction site workers, housed at the Loulé ZAP

The Municipality of Loulé informed that, following a new outbreak of the disease among workers at a construction site taking place in the municipality (Quinta da Ombria), dozens of people linked to the construction company responsible for carrying out the work were tested. .

In a statement, the municipality indicates that the Health Authority, in conjunction with the Municipality of Loulé and other civil protection entities, “conducted a contact screening, with the prophylactic isolation of individuals who tested positive”.

According to the same source, the infected workers are now properly separated from the rest of their colleagues. For this purpose, the municipality opened a Population Support Zone (ZAP) in the Spanish pavilion, in Loulé, where workers who were negative in the screening tests were housed.

The Municipal Service of Civil Protection and Security in the Forest has also collaborated with the National Republican Guard in the daily control actions of workers positive for COVID-19 and who are in confinement in the homes of the construction company.

For reasons of prevention and safety of the entire community, the Municipality requested the Algarve Biomedical Center (ABC) to carry out tests on all employees of the nursing homes of Tôr, Salir and Querença, the results of which, for all 108 employees tested, were negative.

 

Situation Report Azores 22nd July – 23rd July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

RTP Açores” reported, yesterday that most of the Canadian emigrants who’ve been arriving at Ponta Delgada Airport in the past few days, have been submitting ‘invalid’ “Covid-19” test results!  A test, taken 72 hours before departure, is required to enter the region, otherwise one must be taken on arrival.

So, last weekend, many passengers from Canada were being asked to undergo new tests and spend time in ‘confinement’ in a hotel, until their fresh results were known.

According to the Regional Health Authority, too many test results that were being ‘presented’ on arrival, were inconclusive or the original testing centre wasn’t correctly identified.

The Health Authority has also reported that 1,023 tests, carried out in the last 24 hours, haven’t revealed any new ‘positive’ cases of “COVID-19”.  Indeed, a 42-year-old woman who’s resident on the island of São Miguel, has recovered in that time.

The ‘Archipelago’ has had a total of 161 ‘infections’ since the outbreak began on March the 15th.  There are currently just eight ‘active’ cases; 6 on the island of São Miguel, 1 on Flores and 1 on Terceira.

 

Portugal Situation Report Wednesday 22nd July

Due to a technical problem this was published on our Algarve page here.

For Thursday 23rd it will revert to this page

 

Portugal Situation Report Tuesday 21st July

Introduction

Good morning – Are we seeing and improving sign as far as Covid-19? Certainly there was an optimistic sign with the lowest number of increases in confirmed cases this month and that the transmission rate was below 1 (between 0.96 and 0.99) at national level, between 12 and 16 July, representing a decrease in contagion.

On the rural fire front it was also positive news with the number of rural fires continuing to decrease from 246 on 17th July to 169 yesterday. Although off course 169 too many, given the very dry and critical fire risk for much of Portugal, this is a very good achievement especially that none of these have developed into major fires.

Of note was the dry thunderstorms in some areas last night and with a high concentration in the areas surrounding Castelo Branco and central Portugal. During the night, dry thunderstorms caused 12 fires, three of which are still being resolved, according to the Civil Protection Authority. The most affected areas were Castelo Branco, Portalegre, Santarém, Lisbon and Setúbal. Social media was filled with photographs and videos about the phenomenon that looked more like a shower of lightning and lightning.

This looks set to continue, with the IPMA forecasting for today  that there are conditions for the favourable occurrence of showers and thunderstorms, especially in the interior and during the afternoon, and sometimes strong wind in the highlands of the South region.

It appears that the zero tolerance on the burning of debris, and the muscular response to fires by the emergency services is working at present – long may it continue.

As long as we have fires however, it will be essential that people living in rural areas are fully aware of threat of fires and know instinctively what ro do should a fire break out. We have been emphasing this over the last few weeks.

It is important also that those letting and managing local lodging accommodation ensure that their clients understand what action to take as well. For those renting accommodation in high risk areas this means ensuring clients know what the alarm signal sounds like, where the local assembly point is as well as escape routes are. If you do not know then your clients will certainly not, so take action now.

Have a Safe Day

DGS Covid-19 situation

The Directorate-General for Health (DGS) announced this Monday the existence of 1,691 deaths and 48,771 cases of Covid-19 in Portugal, since the beginning of the pandemic.

The number of deaths rose, Sunday to Monday by two, while the number of confirmed cases increased by 135, which corresponds to an increase of 0.3%.

There are 454 people in hospital, 15 more than Sunday. 61 are in Intensive Care Units, the same number compared to Sunday.

The number of recovered cases rose from 33,369 to 33,547, plus 178.

Covid-19 More detailed statistics

Of the 13,533 patients who have not yet recovered from the disease (out of a total of 48,771 confirmed to date), about 56% are located in the region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley.

Of the total number of patients registered since March, more than two thirds (68.8%) are recovered, stressed Marta Temido, adding that 26.8% of those infected are recovering at home and that 0.9% of patients are hospitalized ( of these, 61 are in intensive care units).

Among the 454 patients in hospital, 382 (84%) are located in the area of ​​the Regional Health Administration of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, of which 66% occupy hospitals in the Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon that serve the five most affected municipalities.

The incidence rate of cases per 100,000 inhabitants – which has been used by many countries to impose restrictive conditions on travelers from Portugal – stood at 19 in the last seven days , pointed out the minister, considering the value as an “encouraging sign”, for showing that the country” is already below an incidence rate of 20 per 100 thousand inhabitants “.

The incidence rate registered this Monday was actually the lowest since July 1 in almost all municipalities in the country, except for Sintra.

Also the RT – calculated by the National Institute of Health Dr. Ricardo Jorge and which measures the risk of transmission of the disease – was set below 1 (between 0.96 and 0.99) at national level, between 12 and 16 July, representing a decrease in contagion.

Health

Reguengos de Monsaraz Outbreak Update

The Southern Union of Doctors (SMZS) yesterday considered “abusive and illegal” the mobilization of doctors to provide care to users of a home in Reguengos de Monsaraz (Évora) where an outbreak of covid-19 emerged.

In a statement, the union indicated that “it has been denouncing the abusive and illegal policy of mobilizing doctors” to Reguengos de Monsaraz, “decided and executed” by the president of the Regional Health Administration (ARS) of Alentejo.

“The refusal of any doctor to provide care to patients has never been at stake”, guaranteed the SMZS, speaking out against “the disrespectful way” the clinicians “were treated and the authoritarian and unfounded attitudes to which they have been subjected”.

The municipality of Reguengos de Monsaraz records the biggest outbreak in Alentejo of the disease caused by the new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, after being detected, on June 18, at the home of the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation (FMIVPS).

Following this outbreak, according to the latest update of the epidemiological bulletin, released today by the municipality, but with data until Sunday, this county in the district of Évora registers 17 deaths, 90 active cases and 55 cured.

Number of transplants fell 52%

The covid-19 pandemic has resulted in the total number of transplants performed in the first half of this year to fall by 52%, as well as the number of deceased donors, which decreased by 55% compared to the same period in 2019, according to data released today.

Although in January and February there was “a hopeful increase of 22% in donation activity compared to the same period last year”, it fell in the following months due to the impact of the pandemic, said the president of the Instituto Português do Sangue e of Transplantation (IPST), Maria Antónia Escoval, in the ‘webinar’, “National day of organ donation and transplantation”, date marked today.

Maria Antónia Escoval explained that in March, in the face of the pandemic, a contingency plan for the sustainability and safety of transplantation had to be implemented.

Thus, between March and June, “there was a 55% decrease in the number of deceased donors and a 52% decrease in the total number of transplants compared to the same period in 2019”, said Maria Antónia Escoval.

The activity data was detailed by the national transplant coordinator, Margarida Ivo Silva, stating that 307 national transplants were performed in 2019 and 147 in 2020, which corresponds to a 52% drop in transplantation from March to June.

Transmission Rate at 0.97 between July 12th and 16th

The Minister of Health, Marta Temido, said today that the transmission rate (RT) of covid-19 was 0.97 between 12 and 16 July, considering that the risk is “a downward trend”.

At the press conference on updating information regarding the covid-19 pandemic, which takes place at the Ministry of Health, in Lisbon, Marta Temido said that the latest figures calculated by the National Institute of Health Doctor Ricardo Jorge on the risk of transmission of disease show that the RT was 0.97 on July 12-16.

The minister stated that “the true value” can vary between 0.96 and 0.99 and with a 95% confidence margin.

“The results indicate that the risk of transmission over time is on a downward trend at national level”, she stressed.

Covid-19 in Cascais: 1.3% of the tested population had contact with the virus

The Cascais Council has decided to test the entire population. So far, 30,000 inhabitants have taken the serological test and only 1.3% have been in contact with the new coronavirus. But more tests are needed and there is a laboratory bus circulating in the municipality, as well as teams of volunteers in 40 neighbourhoods that go door to door to try to convince residents to take the Covid-19 test.

The municipality of Cascais has 214 thousand inhabitants. So far, 30,000 people have been tested for HIV, 20,000 more tests are scheduled.

The mayor Carlos Carreiras acknowledges that “it would be extraordinary to test 50% of the population and that would take about five months”.

He added that door-to-door visits to neighbourhoods with the highest incidence of positive cases in Covid-19 are defined by the local health authorities.

Carlos Carreiras says that he cannot define a work strategy without having concrete data. On a small tablet it shows the numbers, the graphs of the serological tests (which allow to assess whether a person has specific antibodies to the new coronavirus in the blood) and of the PCR (which are able to confirm the presence of the virus).

DGS reassures. Transmission of coronavirus in pregnancy happens “in a very small number of cases

Regarding the reduction in the number of transplants during the pandemic, deputy director-general of health says that some surgeries were postponed “for the safety of the patient”

The deputy director-general of Health, Diogo Cruz, recalls that the vertical transmission of Covid-19, that is, from mother to baby, has been reported in a “small number of cases” and therefore should not be a cause for concern for pregnant women.

Asked about the baby who, according to Expresso reported over the weekend, was born more than two weeks ago with severe symptoms associated with covid-19, having been ventilated and admitted to intensive care, the deputy director-general of Health refused to provide information about the case.

Diogo Cruz says that “he cherishes medical confidentiality” and wanted to respect the family’s privacy, giving no further details about the case. “I understand the anxiety but I will not talk about the particular case,” he said at a press conference.

However, noting that little is known about the new coronavirus and “there are not that many pregnant women who have had babies”, the official points out that the transmission from mother to child during pregnancy “is an event that is described as very infrequent”.

“The important thing is to reassure pregnant women,” said Diogo Cruz.

Leisure

Motorhomes banned from parking by the Beach

The Government clarified today that motorhomes are prohibited from parking in parks and parking areas with access to beaches, in the context of the pandemic of covid-19, a measure that the sector federation considers “absurd”.

A source from the State Secretariat of Tourism said that, taking into account the exceptional measures of access, occupation and use of beaches in the 2020 bathing season, the Government “understood that it was appropriate, necessary and proportional to ban ‘motorhomes or similar in parks and parking areas’”.

By prohibiting permanence, he added, “it was intended to prohibit both the parking (stay without occupants) and overnight (stay with occupants) of motorhomes in the parks and parking areas for access to the beaches”.

The president of the Portuguese Federation of Autocaravanismo (FPA), Manuel Bragança, considered “the absurd and somewhat aberrant” the impossibility of the caravans to park in the beach parks.

“We are not interested in staying overnight on the beach. My vehicle is the motorhome and I am prohibited from enjoying the beach because my vehicle is a motorhome and because someone remembered to write something like that in a legal diploma”, he said.

The federation will again request an audience from Secretary of State for Tourism, Rita Marques, to try to demonstrate “how negative the situation is”.

Travel

Portugal Health Passport

The Portugal Health Passport platform will become available to all tourists visiting Portugal, ensuring the possibility of testing the covid-19 and access to care in private health services.

In a note sent to the newsrooms, the organization promoting this platform, in conjunction with Turismo de Portugal, defends the added value of Portugal Health Passport in revitalizing the tourism sector and the importance of health as a vector for the Turismo 2027 strategy, which may represent an annual turnover of more than 100 million euros.

“Clinical practice in Portugal is already an international reference among peers. This is the time for this perception to also be transversal to the population. The response we gave at the peak of the pandemic gave us international prominence, which guarantees security for those who visit us”, said the executive director of Health Cluster Portugal, Joaquim Cunha.

Tourists can request the document through the website www.portugalhealthpassport.com, which includes the possible testing of the new coronavirus, as well as access – at previously fixed prices – to health care and ‘check-ups’ of five types in the network of hospitals and clinics at CUF, Hospital da Luz, HPA Saúde and Lusíadas.

Economy

Portugal will receive 15.3 Billion Euros from the European Recovery Fund. Costa says it is a “good deal”

The prime minister indicated yesterday that Portugal will receive 15.3 billion euros from the Recovery Fund, according to the principle agreement reached by EU leaders last night, which he considered “good”, although less ambitious than the original plan.

“I think the agreement reached is a good agreement, it was at the limit of what would make this fund not a sufficiently robust to respond to this first phase of the crisis. And, in the combination of loans and grants, I think we will be left with a fund that will have 700 billion euros (In Europe). It is in any case a historic step to set up a fund of this nature based on the issuance of debt by the Commission”.

The Prime Minister, who was speaking in Brussels before the formal start of the fourth day of the European Council dedicated to the plan to relaunch the European economy in the face of thCovid-19 crisis, stressed that “something that is important is that, in this significant reduction in the amount of the Fund “at the level of non-refundable transfers” it was essentially possible to protect what were the national envelopes “.

“And, therefore, except for some mishaps this afternoon, what we can count on in relation to the Recovery Fund, with regard to Portugal, in its different dimensions, is with a budget of 15.3 billion euros, which has execution scheduled between January 2021 and 2026 “, he indicated.

Assuming that this is “a sum that imposes enormous responsibility” and gives a “very significant opportunity for the country to respond with energy to the very deep economic crisis”, giving it a “capacity for response” that Portugal would not otherwise have, António Costa explained that the country “lost” now in the Fund in the face of the decrease in its amount will be “compensated” in the Union budget for 2021-2027, the negotiating “marathon” that follows.

MAI opens enquiry into kennel fire at Santo Tirso

The Minister of Internal Administration ordered the opening of an investigation into the role of the GNR and Civil Protection in the fire that hit two illegal kennels in Santo Tirso, killing 54 animals.

In an order signed this Monday, Eduardo Cabrita determines the inspector general of Internal Administration, Anabela Cabral Ferreira, to open an investigation “to the reported facts, aiming at ascertaining possible responsibilities”.

The minister considers that there are “doubts about the facts that occurred in the forest area of ​​the parish of Agrela”, municipality of Santo Tirso, where the two kennels affected by the flames are located, as well as “about the performance of the different authorities on the ground”.

The dispatch cites press reports that “dozens of animals have lost their lives” found in the kennels “Cantinho das Quatro Patas” and “Abrigo de Paredes”, with “possible flaws in the performance of the GNR and the agents of the Protection” being pointed out on the ground “.

Eduardo Cabrita says that, following the news, clarifications were requested from the GNR and the National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority, which were provided.

Region Reports

Madeira

Madeira remains with 102 confirmed cases of Covid-19

The Region currently maintains 102 confirmed cases of covid-19, of which 94 are recovered cases and 8 are active cases.

In the epidemiological report published today by IASAÚDE, until the end of July 19, 1,559 notifications of suspected cases of covid-19 were recorded in RAM, 1,457 of which were not confirmed.

The 8 active cases consist of imported cases identified in the context of the surveillance activities implemented at the Covid-19 Screening Unit at Madeira Airport.

Four people are in isolation at the Polyvalent Inpatient Unit dedicated to covid-19 at Hospital Dr. Nélio Mendonça.

To date, 10,321 people are being monitored by the health authorities of the various counties in the region, now using the MadeiraSafeToDiscover application, 4603 of these people are under active surveillance.

Regarding other tests for covid-19 screening performed, in RAM, 34,421 samples were processed (until the end of 07/19/2020).

In the context of the operation of screening travelers at the entrance to the airports of Madeira and Porto Santo, there is a cumulative total of 9,279 harvests for testing the covid-19 carried out on the spot (until 17:30 today).

Cristiano Ronaldo Jersey raises 3250 Euros for Covid-19 Emergency fund

The solidarity auction of a Juventus jersey signed by the best football player in the world, Cristiano Ronaldo, ended last July 6. The highest bid reached 3,520 euros.

An action promoted by the Emergency Fund opens: COVID-19, which is intended to provide access to medicines, health products and services to citizens who have become economically more vulnerable as a result of the current pandemic.

According to the organization, “with this amount it will be possible to give a hand to more people”.

The winning couple, Vânia Moreira and Nuno Vieira, affirm that “in life, we do not walk alone. Our well-being depends on so many known and unknown people around us. It was with great pleasure that we took part in this solidarity action, allowing open: continue to bring health to those in need, with the satisfaction that we feel every time Cristiano Ronaldo gives us a joy. And it has given us so many “.

It should be noted that the auction took place over two weeks on the eSolidar Platform, had dozens of tenders and aimed to help the most disadvantaged in accessing the medicine.

The value of the winning proposal was fully incorporated into the Emergency Fund abem: COVID-19.

Emergência abem: COVID-19 is a solidarity movement, created by Associação Dignitude in March this year to face the negative consequences of the pandemic COVID-19. By helping economically most vulnerable people to access medicines, health products and services, the aim is to minimize the social effects already felt by thousands of Portuguese.

The auction is over, but the need to help those most in need remains.

Therefore, everyone can show solidarity and make a donation to the Emergency Fund abem: COVID-19 through bank transfer to IBAN: PT50.0036.0000.99105930085.59 ; via MB WAY: 932 440 068 ; directly on the website www.abem.pt or page Facebook ABEM: . Donors can send proof of transfer, name and TIN to geral@dignitude.org , in order to receive the donation receipt.

It should be noted that this is an initiative supported by Portugal Inovação Social, through European Union Funds.

President of Madeira Regional Government wants tightened supervision at Madeira Wine rally

The President of the Regional Government said yesterday did not like to see the images of gatherings of people attending the Calheta rally, last weekend, and warned that the moment we live in “is not for games”.

“Unfortunately, there was a group of people – not many – who did not comply” with the social distance and the wearing of the mask in the Calheta rally, Miguel found today, on the sidelines of the 8th anniversary of Banco Alimentar – Mão Solidária, in Santo António, in Funchal.

For this reason, the inspection will tighten again, to “control and contain any pandemic outbreak in the Region”.

“I want to point out that what happened at the bar level is already being controlled by PSP and GNR. And the Government is with the PSP and the GNR. So it’s public health; we are not going to play” he said.

Because of the relaxation that has been seen, the Regional Government will now talk to the director of the Madeira Wine Rally that will take place from 6 to 8 August.

Miguel Albuquerque clarifies that the Government does not want to take punitive action, and relies on people’s “common sense” to adjust their behavior.

“No one will be walking around here with a stick behind people, but people, even the youngest, have to realize that they can have fun, keeping the rules of distance,” he said.

But if they don’t comply, “I have no problem taking the measures I have to take. What I don’t want is to have to close this again, and we get into a situation of social catastrophe,” he said, admitting that they are on the table “all measures”.

In this sense, he concluded: “the rally – any event – will not jeopardize public health in Madeira”.

Even so, Miguel Albuquerque does not intend to suspend the rally, as he believes that “everything can be done as long as it is within the rules”.

Algarve

Covid-19 ststistics

There were no new cases in the Algarve registered since Sunday

The Algarve has 750 cases to date, there are no new infections since yesterday and the number of deaths remains at 15.

In the weekly count by municipality, the Directorate-General for Health records: (accumulated cases):

Albufeira  135 , (2 deaths); Faro – 118; Loulé – 102 , (5 deaths); Portimão – 101 (3 deaths); Lagos – 101; Tavira – 35; Silves – 29; Olhão – 28; Vila Real de Stº António – 17 , ( 2 deaths ); Monchique – 15; Lagoa – 13 , (2 deaths); São Brás de Alportel – 7 , (1 death); Aljezur – 7; Vila do Bispo – 4 and Castro Marim – 4

Algarve Hotel and Tourism School provides over a hundred meals to families in need in Faro

More than 100 prepared meals, 35 servings of cakes and some leftover cooked food are being delivered weekly to the Faro centre of Refood by the School of Hospitality and Tourism of the Algarve (EHTA).

Food is prepared by students in the Management and Kitchen Production class during the face-to-face practical classes that are taking place this July.

In a statement, the School of Hospitality says that the products it has in stock and that need to be made are added to the food that students use in the moments of learning and that then need to be disposed of.

Pastry classes also contribute to these donations with many dozens of doses of desserts, the result of the work developed in the practical sessions.

“We insist on promoting this partnership whenever possible since we have products in stock and we know that there are those who need them. It is the students who do it. Last week we made fish and I already know that for the week it will be rabbit”, says Chef Luis Caboz, trainer at EHTA.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Situation Report Monday 20th of July

Introduction

Yet another sad day yesterday with the loss of a fireman aged just 34 years who died of a cardiorespiratory arrest whilst fighting a fire. In the last two weeks two fireman and two GNR personnel have died on duty. This once again highlights the dangers that the security forces, fire fighters, nurses, doctors and others face, day to day, month to month and year by year, in order to protect us.

They do this work of course, well aware of the dangers involved, and the community owe them all a gratitude of debt to the fantastic work that they all do.

Yesterday the Government announced the extension of the Situation of Alert concerning the rural fire situation which was due to expire last night until Tuesday. This seems prudent given the continuing extreme fire risk, and allows for the continuing of preventive measures that the public must take as well as the additional internal reinforcement measures. We will continue to monitor the situation very closely.

The Minister of Internal Administration, Eduardo Cabrita, praised the work of all civil protection agents: ′′ We have results that are encouraging “, with a number of fires that are half the average of the last 10 years and less 62 % of area burned in the same period “.

A further reminder as we had a query yesterday and that is for ALL emergencies, including Forest fires the number to call is 112. 

Also a reminder if you are planning a boating trip. On 16th the National Maritime Authority rescued six people who were on board of a recreational vessel, after it had overturned in the bar between the island of Armona and the island of Culatra, in Olhão, due to the low depth and the southeast swell that was felt in the place. They remind people of the importance that before going out to sea, always check the weather forecast and have knowledge of the navigation areas, especially near the port bars.

You will see from our morning reports that there has been a general increase in the information concerning rural fires and somewhat less concerning Covid-19. This basically reflects the need to promote prevention and self-protection measures against rural fires, being one of the core responsibilities of Safe Communities Portugal (SCP). The risk of rural fires is severe and SCP has to be well prepared to respond to the situation, which we anticipate will continue and could worsen over the next few weeks. At the same time there is decreasing news concerning Covid-19, except for the situation in the Lisbon Metropolitan area which appears to be decreasing slightly, daily updates on the outbreak at Reguengos de Monsaraz and off course air corridors – in respect of which we await news from the UK.

In examining our priorities, we are therefore reviewing the frequency of our morning report, which was created 4 months ago to cover Covid-19. We will keep you up to date on this over the next few days.

Headline

Rural Fire – Situation of Alert in Mainland extended to 23.59 hrs 21st July 2020

The alert situation in mainland Portugal has been extended until Tuesday night due to weather forecasts for the next few days, announced the Minister of Internal Administration, Eduardo Cabrita.

The minister was speaking at the end of a meeting of the National Operational Coordination Center, in Carnaxide, Oeiras, where all the civil protection agents are. The Government declared on Thursday, July 16, the alert situation in Mainland Portugal between 00:00 on Friday and 23:59 today, due to weather forecasts that pointed to a “significant worsening of the risk of rural fire”.

DGS Covid 19 Situation report

The Directorate-General for Health (DGS) announced this Sunday the existence of 1,689 deaths and 48,636 cases of Covid-19 in Portugal since the beginning of the pandemic.

The number of deaths rose by five more compared to Saturday, while the number of infected people increased by 246 – a decrease in daily figures for over a week. In percentage terms, in the last 24 hours, the increase in deaths rose by 0.3% and the number of confirmed cases increased by 0.5%.

Lisbon and the Tagus Valley is the region where the increase in cases continues to be more significant, accounting for 87% of new cases, with 214 of the 246 accounted for. It was also in the Lisbon area that the five deaths were recorded since Saturday: four concern people aged at least 80 and the fifth case refers to an infected person aged between 70 and 79 years.

There are 439 people hospitalized, 61 are in intensive care, showing a continued decrease. The number of recovered cases rose from 33,153 to 33,369, plus 216. In an accumulated number of cases of infection, Lisbon and Vale do Tejo leads with 24,261, followed by the North (18,338), the Central (4,357), the Algarve (790) and the Alentejo (630).

Health

Reguengos de Monsaraz Outbreak Update

Twenty-one home users in Reguengos de Monsaraz, in the Évora district, infected with covid-19, have recovered after an outbreak that has already caused 17 deaths, the City Council reported yesterday. According to the update of the epidemiological bulletin, the number of active cases of the outbreak dropped to 95, including 44 users and 15 household employees, in addition to 36 people from the community.

Among the 50 cases considered recovered there are, in addition to the 21 users, 10 employees of the home and 19 people from the community, specifies the same bulletin. These numbers are verified resulting from about 2,190 tests carried out with known result until Thursday, the day when results of 20 tests were known, with more than 20 tests expected for today and Monday.

The public health authority has already considered that the outbreak is in resolution and the municipality has indicated today that it will propose the reopening of daycare centers and leisure activities in the county, in addition to public services.

As a result of this outbreak detected on June 18 at the home of the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation (FMIVPS), this morning there were five patients admitted to the Espírito Santo Hospital of Évora (HESE), two of them in intensive care. Of the cases of infection in the community, there is one case hospitalized in intensive care and two in the HESE ward. With the situation at home, the municipality of Reguengos de Monsaraz registers the biggest outbreak in Alentejo of the covid-19 disease caused by the new coronavirus.

 

Economy

Covid-19: G20 criticized for postponing decision on extending debt moratorium

The 20 most industrialized economies (G20) are being criticized by several non-governmental organizations (NGOs) for postponing the decision on extending the debt moratorium to October, contrary to the Fund’s expectations International Monetary Fund and World Bank.

“We needed quick and concerted action, but instead the G20 went backwards; private and multilateral creditors refused to suspend debt payments, as requested by finance ministers in April; the G20 allowed them to continue to billions of dollars to be paid to private creditors every month, taking money away from the urgent task of tackling the economic and health crises, “said Sarah-Jayne Clifton, director of the NGO Debt Jubilee Committee, in a note sent to Lusa.

“It is critical that world leaders move ahead and secure an agreement on debt cancellation this year,” she added.

“The G20 communiqué says that leaders ‘strongly encouraged’ private creditors to join the debt suspension initiative, when in April they only ‘appealed’, and this is important because some private creditors have resisted joining this debt relief process, “said the activist in statements to the financial information agency Bloomberg.

PCP Criticizes Conditions for Financial Support and Taxes Charged by EU

The PCP communist party secretary-general in Portugal stated yesterday that financial aid from the European Union, following the covid-19 pandemic, should be applied to improve national production and should not be subject to changes in labour legislation.

“We know that today there are impositions and limitations imposed by the European Union. In this context of the pandemic, billions of people are now going to be sent here; they do not speak of the conditions that they will impose on us” said Jerónimo de Sousa at a rally in Santiago do Cacém, in the district of Setúbal.

“Do not want to impose on us – as they are already imposing – measures, which return again to that blind rule of the need to change labour legislation. And even with something new, which is the taxation of European taxes in our country”, added the communist leader.

Convinced that the European Union will define “how, for what and to whom” community support goes, Jerónimo de Sousa stated that if the Portuguese have to pay taxes established at European level, this will mean the loss of Portuguese sovereignty in the fiscal sphere , which he considered “unacceptable”.

“Nor in the fiscal sphere could we assert our sovereignty, taking into account that the European Union would determine the taxes in Portugal, to be, consequently, received by the European Union itself. This view is unacceptable. It is also necessary here to defend our sovereignty, to decide on the taxes that must be paid here”, he said.

Armed forces

Government cannot treat military personnel without looking at special risks and restrictions – associations

Professional Military Associations (APM) yesterday warned the Government that they cannot treat this class “without looking at the risks they are taking and the restrictions and duties they are subject to”, namely the consequences of the pandemic of covid-19.

In a statement, the three directorates of APM – National Association of Sergeants, Association of Armed Forces Officers and Association of Squares – stated that they met on Friday to, among other aspects, “make the analysis of the consequences caused by the epidemic outbreak Covid-19 in the military family, namely in the economic, social and professional aspects ”.

“The APM cannot accept that the Government treats the military without looking at the risks they are taking and the restrictions and duties to which they are subject”, they refer, accusing the executive of not complying with the General Bases Law of the Military Status Statute.

The Associations also demand that the law on the right of professional association of the military, of 2001, be complied with and that progress be made “towards the urgent regulation of the recognition to the APM of the exercise of legal representation and collective bargaining, in effective social dialogue with the competent legislative and political-administrative entities”.

“In a context in which, like their fellow citizens, the military has been subjected to a continuous and violent degradation of their living conditions, they announce, propose, study and implement measures, all of them competing for an even greater deterioration of the already difficult situation in which the military of the Armed Forces find themselves ”, they warn.

Rural fires

Two Air Force drones strengthen surveillance of fires starting Tuesday

The first two “drones” of a set of 12, whose acquisition is being managed by the Air Force, will be in service in Lousã, starting on Tuesday and, in the first half of August. They will all be operational, the Minister of Defence announced on Saturday.

“With regard to” drones “, the acquisition of new drones, new resources that the Air Force is managing, will allow a great increase in the surveillance capacity. There are 12 new means. The first two are already in service on Tuesday, in Lousã “, said the Minister of National Defence, João Gomes Cravinho to journalists.

The government official, who travelled to Rio de Moinhos, Abrantes, to accompany an Army patrol action in the district of Santarém, in the scope of forest fire prevention, said that, after entering the service of these two “drones”, continue two more will be done in 10 days in Monchique and two more in Macedo de Cavaleiros.

“During the first half of August, we will have 12 [” drones “] to cover the entire national territory”, he maintained. The minister also explained that the “drones” have a flight autonomy in the order of 10 hours, and that they can operate day and night, since they have sensors that allow to identify ignitions during the night. “Therefore, they significantly reinforce our ability to identify fire spots”, concluded the official.

Fire in Santo Tirso results in death of 54 animals.

The Municipality of Santo Tirso clarified yesterday that it counted 110 dogs alive in the animal shelter hit by the fire in Serra da Agrela, lamenting the death of 54 animals. In a new communiqué sent to Lusa, the municipality chaired by the socialist Alberto Costa clarifies that, “when the fire broke out, already in the morning, and following the aftermath period, it was possible to count 110 dogs that were in the shelter alive. According to the municipality, 52 dogs and two cats died.

The municipality states that it has an ongoing “plan for the removal of animals from that space, in order to guarantee all conditions of treatment and animal welfare”, confirming that, so far, 13 animals have been rehomed in the Kennel / Gatil Municipal of Santo Tirso. GNR clarified this Sunday that the death of animals in the fire in Santo Tirso was not due to the fact that it prevented access by the public to the site, but because of the size of the fire and the quantity of animals.

“It is important to point out that the tragic consequences of this fire did not have any correspondence with the fact that the Guarda prevented the access of the place by the public. At that time, the animals that could have been saved had already been saved”, explains the GNR, in a statement. The PAN party warned today that the large fire in Santo Tirso, in the district of Porto, hit two animal shelters and says that “dozens of animals have already died charred”, calling for changes in legislation.

On its official page of the social network Facebook, the party says that it is monitoring the situation on the spot and accuses the authorities of making it difficult to remove animals that are still alive from the shelters, “claiming that it is private property”, and informs that “it has already been requested, as a matter of urgency, to issue a court order allowing access to shelters and the precautionary apprehension of animals”.

“Dozens of citizens, non-governmental organizations and animal protection associations immediately offered to provide all the necessary assistance, however they were blocked by both the City Council and the respective municipal veterinarian, as well as by the owners of the shelters”, points out the party.

GNR states in the statement that, following the fire that started on Saturday, in a forest area in the parish of Sobrado, municipality of Valongo, and that spread to the parish of Agrela, in the municipality of Santo Tirso, “part of a land, in which there were several installations with dogs”. “While the fire broke out, still in the afternoon [on Saturday], the action of the GNR was essential to allow most of the dogs to have been rescued alive. Unfortunately, the size of the fire and the large concentration of animals in that place, prevented it being possible to rescue all the animals alive, having recovered some already lifeless”, the note reads.

A petition asking for “justice for the lack of aid to animals in the 4-legged kennel in Santo Tirso” brought together, until 20:50, 68,963 signatures. The Animal association also today requested the Government and parliament to be held accountable in the case of animal deaths in that particular shelter in Santo Tirso.

Region News

Madeira news Monday 20th of July

Covid – 19

Four people are in isolation at the Multipurpose Inpatient Unit dedicated to COVID-19 at Hospital Dr. Nélio Mendonça. The 8 active cases consist of imported cases identified in the context of the surveillance activities implemented at the Covid-19 Screening Unit at Madeira Airport.

To date, 9970 people are being monitored by the health authorities of the various counties in the region, now using the MadeiraSafeToDiscover application, 4570 of these people are under active surveillance.

 https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/99146/Covid-19_Quatro_doentes_continuam_em_isolamento_no_hospital_dr_Nelio_Mendonca

Porto to Ponto Santo flights

SATA Azores Airlines have guaranteed two weekly flights, between Lisbon and Porto and Porto Santo, between the months of July and the end of September, says the newspaper ‘Açoriano Oriental’.

It is a sign of the company’s resumption that will thus establish the weekly air operation with the golden island. The newspaper also said that flights between Lisbon and Porto Santo, depart from the Portuguese capital every Monday at 3 pm and from the city of Porto, on the same day, at 8.20 pm.

Bars closed and PSP tow away cars in Funchal

The Public Security Police (PSP) ordered the closure of at least two bars in Funchal and towed several vehicles parked at bus stops on Avenida do Mar. Traffic tickets for irregular parking were also imposed on cars parked near the Old Town of the city

The President of the Regional Government had already warned that he requested, with the security forces, an increased inspection at Madeiran night, precisely because there were some spaces overcrowded. People were not complying with the rules enacted by health authorities. At the end of Saturday night and during this early morning, in Funchal, Miguel Albuquerque’s words were very noticeable.

The Public Security Police (PSP) mobilized several agents for the field over the last night, who started by fining several vehicles owners in the vicinity of the Old Town of Funchal, more specifically at Rua Bela de São Tiago. In question will be violations for irregular parking along this artery.

At Rua das Fontes, where at midnight there was a large crowd of people consuming alcohol on the public road – which is not allowed, by law, in Madeira – everything “was transformed at a glance”. The police arrived, dispersed the crowds, noted non-compliance and approached the owner of one of the spaces located there, who was forced to close the door earlier. At Zona Velha, namely Rua de Santa Maria, one of the best known nightlife establishments, Venda Velha, also ended up closing early on a Saturday night, at 00:30. The administrator of Grupo Café do Teatro, Dário Silva, criticised this on his personal Facebook account.

PSD-Madeira is hesitant to come together in the next 2021 Local elections.

The party president, Miguel Albuquerque, said yesterday he does not want to make the mistakes of 2017 and will listen to local political commissions. What is certain is that an agreement with the CDS extended to the entire Region is complicated. Funchal, on the other hand, remains the biggest unknown.

And there are several other situations to resolve. For example, in Ribeira Brava, support for Ricardo Nascimento implies places on the list for the municipality. And in mainland Portugal, the national PSD sent a message that is surprising social democrats.

 

Algarve

Covid.19: Person arrested in Faro for not wearing a mask

A 36-year-old man complained to the Faro Public Security Police (PSP), for excessive noise in the area where he lives, on Thursday night, but for not wearing a mask, he may now be subject to a fine.

The individual went to the PSP police station, without a mask or visor, and ended up “detained for injuries and disobedience”, due to the refusal to use protection. The same source adds that the agents warned the man that he had no protection and he refused to comply.

National Maritime Authority rescues six people off Olhão

On the 16th of July, the National Maritime Authority rescued six people who were on board of a recreational vessel, after it had turned in the bar between the island of Armona and the island of Culatra, in Olhão, due to the low depth and the southeast swell that was felt in the place.

The local Command of the Maritime Police of Olhão received, at 7:20 pm, an alert through the Coordination Center for Maritime Search and Rescue of Lisbon (MRCC-Lisbon), reporting the existence of six people who would be adrift after the vessel where they continued to have upset.

The Olhão Lifeboat Station was engaged, which headed for the site using a semi-rigid vessel and with a team from INEM and the Portuguese Red Cross on board, and a vessel from the Olhão Maritime Police was also activated.

The six crew members, all Portuguese, were collected from the water on board the Maritime Police vessel, in good health, and subsequently transported ashore. The semi-rigid lifeguard station towed the injured vessel. The National Maritime Authority reinforces the importance of, before going out to sea, always check the weather forecast and have knowledge of the navigation areas, especially near the port bars.

Missing man was found dead at the bottom of ravine in Aljezur

A man who had been missing for four days was found dead this Saturday, July 18th, at the bottom of a ravine in Aljezur.  The location was in the area of ​​Martins Estevens, about three kilometres from his home”. The victim is 62-year-old Armenio Costa, who “must have been involved in a car accident.”

The family members “alerted the GNR and began to search with the help of friends, firefighters and forest sappers”. Thes man lived in the Carrascalinho area and was seen, for the last time, “in a cafe, on Wednesday afternoon, in Aljezur. It was probably when he was going home that he suffered the accident”.

Situation Report Azores 19th July – 20th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

The Regional Health Authority has said that the 931 tests carried out in the two reference laboratories in the Region in the last 24 hours did not reveal positive cases of COVID-19

The Region has a total of 159 cases of infection by the new SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, which causes the disease COVID-19, with seven currently active positive cases, five on the island of São Miguel, and one on the island of Terceira. And one on the island of Flores. The Regional Health Authority reiterates that measures to prevent and contain the pandemic must be maintained and strengthened, whenever possible, by citizens, public and social sector organisations.

 

Portugal situation Report Sunday 19th July

Introduction

Good Morning

Adendum – Since writing the morning report we have become aware of the very sad news concerning a Leiria Volunteer firefighter, who was part of an aftermath team in the Arrabal fire in Leiria, who died this Saturday due to a cardiorespiratory arrest that he suffered at the scene.

André Pedrosa was 34 years old and had been a father a few days ago.

The President of the Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, today lamented the death of a fireman in Leiria, on Saturday, which he classified as “a very intense and difficult day for Portuguese firefighters”. We send our deep condolences to family and friends

Today is supposed to be our Happy Sunday, and in keeping with this we will try, despite this tragedy, to highlight some positive news, which can be a challenge when we reflect on both on the rural fire situation and Covid-19.

Yesterday the rural fire pattern across the country was very similar to Friday, with the main focus being on Porto, Braga and Aveiro Districts. These are some of the hottest and driest areas of Portugal, being part of an extensive area where the fire risk has been at maximum for the last few days.

Although there were 19 less rural fires yesterday, with 227 fires throughout the country yesterday compared with 246 on Friday, this was 227 too many . Again the “muscular” approach by the emergency services appears to have worked and although the number of fires was quite high, they were extinguished relatively quickly. This has avoided any major fires during this period, despite the extreme weather conditions. Very good work by both commanders and all front line operatives, who work under terrible conditions.

For those who will be up and about at 0915 hrs I will be on KissFm radio, Solid Gold Sunday (Crimecheck feature), not to talk exclusively about Covid-19, but on the subject of rural fire precautions, self-protection and the very high temperatures we have been experiencing. Please tune in.

Safe Communities thanks KissFM particularly Sir. Owen Gee who hosts the program for giving us the opportunity to get these important public safety messages across. In fact we started these in 2011, at monthly intervals, but the frequency has increased recently to virtually weekly due to Covid-19 to ensure that key messages are conveyed to the public.

On a positive note, the Secretary of State for Tourism, Rita Marques, said yesterday “that the Portuguese should continue to promote the country as a tourist destination” to boost the sector’s recovery following the Covid-19 pandemic. She stressed that it is necessary “to instigate greater and better communication, more positive, assertive and continuous about the destiny of Portugal and all the various assets” that the country has. A very positive message and in everyone’s interest.

Reflecting that and with all eyes on travel corridors and travel advice, Hungarian health authorities yesterday changed Portugal’s rating from yellow to green in relation to entry restrictions due to covid-19. Let us hope this is a start of similar decisions by other countries.

So amongst all this there are some positive messages here.

Once again I would like to thank our volunteers who are contributing to these morning reports, Rameiro Martinez, Daniel Fernandes and our colleague in the Azores for all their hard work.

Today is our Happy Sunday so let’s make it a happy and positive one.

Covid-19 Statistics

Portugal yesterday registered two more deaths and 313 new cases of infection by covid-19, compared to Friday, 241 of whom were in the region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, according to the daily bulletin of Directorate-General for Health (DGS). The lower number of deaths continues a recent trend.

According to the bulletin, since the beginning of the pandemic until Saturday, there have been 48,390 confirmed cases of infection and 1,684 deaths. In percentage terms, since Friday, the increase in deaths was 0.1% (from 1,682 to 1,684) and in confirmed cases 0.6% (from 48,077 to 48,390).

Lisbon and the Vale do Tejo is the region where the increase in cases continues to be more significant, accounting for 77% of new cases, with 241 of the 313 registered. It was also in the Lisbon area that the two fatalities were recorded who were both over 80 years old. In number of cases, Lisbon and the Vale do Tejo lead with 24,047, followed by the North region (18,328, with 35 new cases), the Center region (4,354, 14 new cases), the Algarve (780 and 16 new cases) and Alentejo (627, four more cases).

Health

Outbreak at GNR Bragança

DGS yesterday corrected information about outbreak in GNR in Bragança. There are only 4 cases and not 56

“It is clarified that the number refers to cases with an Epidemiological link and not to active cases in the GNR of Bragança, with only 4 infected in this institution, clarified the Ministry of Health in a statement sent to the newsrooms.

Reguengos de Monsaraz Outbreak Update

The commission of inquiry set up by the Portuguese Medical Association to assess the clinical circumstances related to the outbreak of covid-19 in a home in Reguengos de Monsaraz estimates it will present a report by the end of the month, it was announced yesterday.

The group is coordinated by the secretary of the Regional Council of the South and a member of the National Council of Audit and Quality of the Order of Doctors, Filipa Lança, and began to “visit the places and listen to several people”. In that care home of Reguengos de Monsaraz, 17 people who were infected with covid-19 have died by Friday.

The Order of Doctors had already expressed concern over what is happening several times and, at the end of last week, the President of the Order of Doctors, Miguel Guimarães, and the President of the Southern Regional Council, Alexandre Valentim Lourenço, announced that they would proceed with the creation of a commission of inquiry that will assess all situations.

After these complaints, the Portuguese Bar Association (AO) announced on Tuesday the decision to “find out what is happening in Portuguese care homes, at this stage of the pandemic”. According to the statutes, OA has the duty “to defend the rule of law and the rights, freedoms and guarantees of citizens and to collaborate in the administration of justice”, the professional order now intends to “investigate possible human rights injuries in this area”.

Portugal records 206 active Outbreaks

Portugal currently accounts for a total of 206 active outbreaks of covid-19, Health Minister Marta Temido announced yesterday at the regular press conference on the evolution of the pandemic in the country.

“It should be noted that we have 41 active outbreaks in the North, 13 in the Center, 134 in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, five in the Alentejo and 13 in the Algarve. This is, in general, the characterization of the country’s epidemiological situation”, affirmed the minister, in the presentation of the daily bulletin of the health authorities, in a sum that makes a total of 206 active outbreaks.

According to Marta Temido, there was also a positive evolution in terms of patients hospitalized with the new coronavirus, as well as those hospitalized who need intensive care.

“It is also clear from the bulletin that 447 patients are hospitalized, 29 less than yesterday, which a good indicator is. Of these, 67 are in intensive care, five less than yesterday [Thursday] ”, she explained, adding that the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo region concentrates 385 of the total 447 hospitalized, that is, 86%, and that 302 ( 68%) are in hospitals in the five most watched municipalities in the evolution of the disease: Lisbon, Amadora, Sintra, Loures and Odivelas.

Transport

Rules and changes imposed on Transport

The Minister of Health, Marta Temido, yesterday ruled out changes in the restrictions imposed by the covid-19 pandemic on public transport, after doubts expressed by the Minister of Infrastructure and Housing, Pedro Nuno Santos, on inspection of standards.

“Public health recommendations have an evolutionary character, even according to what are the new recommendations of international organizations, but at the moment I see no reason for us to be able to change what has been defined,” said the minister, at the press conference regular report on the evolution of the pandemic in the country.

Recognizing that the issue of the concentration of people in closed spaces “raises the greatest concern” and that health authorities and the government have been “very careful” in decisions on this matter, Marta Temido recalled that public transport accumulates “a significant number of people” and represent “closed and difficult to ventilate spaces”, preferring prudence in reassessing measures.

“It is a fact that there are studies that point out that there is no direct causality between public transport trips and transmission of the infection, because it is difficult to identify a direct causality, but there is a risk in that circumstance alone and we have, in the phase current situation that we still face in the pandemic, of having the greatest caution when considering alternatives”, she stressed, pointing out that “other countries” have also adopted restrictions on transport.

Tourism

The Secretary of State for Tourism, Rita Marques, said that “the Portuguese should continue to promote the country as a tourist destination” to boost the sector’s recovery following the Covid-19 pandemic.
In Ponte de Sor, Portalegre, at the launch of the program “For a Responsible Autocaravanismo”, the Secretary of State stressed that it is necessary “to instigate greater and better communication, more positive, assertive and continuous about the destiny of Portugal and all the various assets” that the country has.

“We are all, we are part of this wave. It is a wave that is not only sympathetic towards tourism workers, but also something that we all need after a period of confinement. We all need a break, to regain energy with those who are most dear to us and I think the vacation period can be just an excellent opportunity for that to happen,” she added.
Rita Marques stressed that Portugal was recognized as the best tourist destination in the world for three consecutive years and that, at this moment, there must be a union of the Portuguese to defend the sector with the foreign market.

The Secretary of State also stated that “Turismo de Portugal has been financing motorhome areas” and that “so far 41 motorhome service areas involving 27 municipalities have been approved, with a total value of two million euros”.

Survey

51% of Portuguese against new confinements, poll shows

An Aximage poll for Jornal de Notícias news, shows that 51% of respondents are against any new period of confinement. Regarding the assessment of the Government’s actions against the pandemic, 55% consider it positive, while 33% do not agree with the options taken by António Costa’s executive.

As for the final phase of the Champions League, 44% of participants negatively evaluate the decision to host the competition in Lisbon, with 39% agreeing with the reception of the event. The remaining 17% have no opinion on the matter. This survey was based on 624 interviews with people aged 18 and over. The 95% margin of error is 3.5%.

Enforcement

The Authority for Food and Economic Security (ASAE) instituted four criminal cases and 74 administrative offenses in the first two weeks of July, following an inspection operation of about 265 commercial operators, it was released today.

In a statement, ASAE explained that it has initiated four criminal proceedings “with the main offenses being fraud against merchandise, disobedience and exploitation of games of wealth”.

74 administrative offenses were also initiated, the main infractions of which were non-compliance with hygiene requirements, non-conformities related to processes based on the principles of Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP), the lack of requirements in foodstuffs or the lack of previous communication, also highlights the note.

ASAE also determined “the provisional suspension of the activities of three food and beverage establishments, for non-compliance with the general and specific hygiene requirements and non-compliance with the requirements of the kitchens, pantries and manufacturing areas of the food and beverage establishments”. ASAE also apprehended “various foodstuffs”, such as fish, meat products or wines, for a value of around 6,500 euros.

The purpose of the inspection was “to guarantee the safety of consumers and the performance of fair and legal commercial practices, during the traditional summer vacation period”.

United Kingdom

Covid-19: UK suspends counting of deaths from Covid-19 to check for “statistical flaws”

The UK government has halted the publication of the daily number of Covid-19 deaths over concerns that “statistical flaws” might be rendering the data inaccurate.

The pause in publication was decided by the Department of Health and Social Care after the health secretary, Matt Hancock, ordered a review into the figures. A study by academics published late this week suggested that the toll is subject to “over-exaggeration” because of the way Public Health England (PHE) measures deaths.

A statement on the government’s website read: “The secretary of state has today, 17 July, asked PHE to urgently review their estimation of daily death statistics.”Currently the daily deaths measure counts all people who have tested positive for coronavirus and since died, with no cut-off between time of testing and date of death.

“There have been claims that the lack of cut-off may distort the current daily deaths number. We are therefore pausing the publication of the daily figure while this is resolved”

Meanwhile, NHS England, which is separately reporting confirmed deaths in hospitals under its jurisdiction, said on Saturday that a further 13 people who tested positive for the coronavirus had died. This brings the total of confirmed deaths in hospitals to 29,173, the body said. The patients are understood to have been aged between 49 and 96 years old and all had known underlying conditions.

The suspension of UK-wide statistics is related to observed differences in data reported in England and the other countries of the UK. Professor Yoon K Loke, of the University of East Anglia, and Carl Heneghan, professor of evidence-based medicine at the University of Oxford’s Nuffield Department of Primary Care, said on Thursday night that a “statistical flaw” in the way Public Health England compiles data on deaths had created a disparity in figures published by the different UK nations.

Regional Reports

Madeira Situation Report

Covid-19 statistics

Yesterday there was a new positive case of COVID-19 to report, namely a traveller tested for COVID19 in the context of the surveillance activities implemented at Madeira Airport.

The region has so far recorded 102 confirmed cases of COVID-19, of whom 93 are recovered cases and 9 are active cases. Earlier in the day according to the DGS bulletin Madeira has had 101 cases of infection since the beginning of the pandemic.

It is recalled that the two new cases of covid-19, announced yesterday by IASAÚDE, do not reside in Madeira and are installed in the municipality of Santa Cruz. Thus, Madeira has eight active cases, while the total number of positive cases recorded since the beginning of the pandemic in the Region now stands at 101.

Miguel Albuquerque Guarantees the Madeira Airport has “The ability to monitor and control outbreaks of infection”

During a visit to a private project in Montado das Rabaças, in Ponta do Sol, Miguel Albuquerque was questioned by journalists regarding Fridays’ arrival of the British Airways flight, which marks the resumption of flights from London, replying that the entire monitoring of Madeira Airport “is working very well” and that alarmism is not necessary.

The president of the Regional Executive ensured that all passengers arriving at Cristiano Ronaldo International Airport are monitored. “Through the computer and the algorithm we were able to contact everyone. The system is operating in full security” he said, stressing that the airport has “the ability to monitor and control outbreaks of infection”.

“I think this flight is capable of bringing tourists, but it will mainly bring Madeirans who will return to their land (…) England is one of the countries with the highest infection rates, we are taking great care of the control at the airport and in monitoring who disembark”. He said that “there is no point in panicking, because the monitoring system we have is working very well”.

Miguel Albuquerque took the opportunity to appeal to the owners of bars and restaurants in the region. “The situation is not normal, we are in a situation of full pandemic and therefore people have to comply with the rules. I appeal to the owners of bars and restaurants who have to determine and alert customers to distance, the use of a mask and not to allow crowds to happen”.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/99050/Miguel_Albuquerque_garante_que_o_Aeroporto_da_Madeira_tem_capacidade_de_monitorizar_e_controlar_os_focos_de_infecao

The PSD Parliamentary Group considers that Madeira is an example at national and international level in the fight against Covid-19.

In an initiative carried out at the entrance of the Dr. Nélio Mendonça Hospital, where the Unit dedicated to the pandemic is installed, Mrs Conceição Pereira stressed that this disease led Madeira to adopt specific measures in order to prevent the spread of the infection, with the concern to protect the population, patients and health professionals.

In view of this scenario, the deputy underlined, for the Region Budget for 2020, presenting in January of this year, “it was necessary to present a supplementary budget in which the largest percentage goes to health, in the order of 115 million euros, to face expenses already incurred and future ones that may occur “.

“We know that it was necessary to purchase personal protective material, masks, gloves, gowns, ventilators for adults and children, and other types of material, including disinfection and acrylic dividers, as well as creating their own spaces. All of this led to an increase in spending and the need for more funds. ”

The deputy stressed that this pandemic also led to more mobilization of the staff, noting that, since March of this year, about 510 health professionals, mostly doctors and nurses, are attached to the specific care unit Covid, which also implies more costs. Conceição Pereira added that at Madeira and Porto Santo airports there are 100 professionals, ensuring a permanent service.

In addition, and of all the material that has already been acquired, the deputy said that it is also necessary to think about the future and the possibility of an aggravation of the pandemic, with more tests and the acquisition of new medication that may eventually arise, therefore, the Region must be endowed with funds to prevent this situation.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/99043/Orcamento_suplementar_preve_mais_115_milhoes_para_a_saude_afirma_PSD

Algarve

Covid-19 Statistics

On Saturday18th July the Algarve had 16 new cases of Covid-19, compared to Friday according to the epidemiological bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS). The total number of accumulated cases since the beginning of the pandemic has risen to 780.

José Apolinário highlights the importance of a Government figure in the Algarve

Secretary of State José Apolinário, appointed coordinator of the response to covid-19 in the Algarve, considers it important to have a link between the Government and the region, recognizing the usefulness of improving coordination between public bodies.

“I have tried to be an interlocutor between the Government’s position in the region and to transmit to my colleagues in the Government the signals and alerts that the situation in the region justifies”, said the Secretary of State for Fisheries, questioned by the Lusa agency.

His position, he said, is based on the “idea-force” of Júlio Almeida Carrapato, civil governor of Faro between 1975 and 1980, who argued that in the region it was necessary to have an institutional figure “who would serve as a spokesman for the Government” but also “spokesperson for the region’s services in the central government”. “I have tried to keep that register, with a space for intervention by mayors and district structures”, he said.

Some mayors defend the maintenance of a figure that coordinates the deconcentrated administration of the State in each region even after the end of the pandemic, with the president of the Algarve Intermunicipal Community (AMAL), António Pina, defending the “recovery of the figure of civil governor and the effective bet on regionalization”.

For José Apolinário, in the Algarve there is “a feeling of decentralization” that at the moment involves “reinforcing the role of local authorities”. His role as coordinator in the pandemic, he reiterated, has been “a facilitator in the relationship between the different areas of central administration in the region, with the municipalities and the institutions”.

Without specifically answering the question of whether or not to maintain the figure of coordinator in a post-pandemic period and even with more powers, the Secretary of State said that he has sought to “dignify and respect the mandate” entrusted to him and that “the Government it will take stock and assess how this situation will arise”.

Covid-19: Resumption of the river connection from Vila Real de Santo António to Spain

The fluvial route along the Guadiana River between Vila Real de Santo António and the city of Ayamonte (Spain) has already been re-established, after having been interrupted in March, due to the covid-19 pandemic, the Portuguese authority announced today.

The reopening of the Portuguese-Spanish river crossing between the Algarve and the autonomous region of Andalusia thus joins the road connection re-established on July 1, between Castro Marim and Ayamonte, through the Guadiana International Bridge, which had also been closed in March , except for the transportation of goods and cross-border workers.

“The river career between Vila Real de Santo António and Ayamonte has already been resumed, with the international maritime connection between the two border cities being restored,” announced the Vila Real de Santo António Chamber in a statement.

Confirmed cases in Loulé and Faro municipalities

After being detected last Wednesday, some cases of Covid-19, among workers of a construction site, in the municipality of Loulé in Quinta da Umbria, the Mayor of Loulé, informed this morning on Facebook that the ABC – Algarve Biomedical Center, conducted tests on all employees of nursing homes in Tôr, Salir and Querença. According to Vítor Aleixo, the results of the 108 employees were all negative.

The municipality’s source confirmed that some cases of Covid.19 were recorded, not giving the exact number, referring that the testing operation for the professionals of the homes was another preventive measure, to prevent possible contagions in the elderly population.

As for infected workers, the same source said that they are being treated and monitored by health entities, together with the authority, Civil Protection, Social Security and GNR. Earlier this week, authorities confirmed an additional 18 cases, linked to construction workers in the municipality of Faro.

According to Rogério Bacalhau, workers are in quarantine to recover, under the responsibility of the health authorities, Civil Protection, Security Forces and the Portuguese Red Cross, which has provided meals and other logistical support. It should be noted that of the 18 infected persons of Brazilian nationality, none are hospitalized. Of the total group, there are 4 who did not report positive, but are under surveillance, said the mayor.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 18th July – 19th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

The Azores still have seven positive cases of the Covid-19 virus, after the 1,135 tests carried out in the last 24 hours have not revealed any new infections, the Regional Health Authority said yesterday. There are five people on the island of São Miguel, one on the island of Terceira and one on the island of Flores.

Since the beginning of the outbreak, 159 cases of infection by the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, which causes the covid-19 disease, have been registered in the archipelago, and sadly, 16 deaths. Four of the confirmed cases in the Azores were people who returned to mainland Portugal, after being diagnosed in the region.

 

Portugal Situation Report Saturday 18th July 2020

Introduction

As expected yesterday was certainly a demanding day for the emergency services as far as rural fires were concerned. As at 1830 hrs there were a total of 150 rural fires recorded, which were tackled by 4,500 operatives supported by 1,200 vehicles and with 115 air deployments throughout the country.

Despite the difficult scenario, as we outlined yesterday, according to Commander Luís Belo Costa of the ANEPC “under the plans in place the emergency services responded very well to the situation and fortunately, there were no major problems or equipment damage.”

Thankfully there were no major incidents so a massive congratulations to all the operatives involved. The approach this year has been what is called the “muscular” approach. This relies on early detection of fires, speedy response and sufficient resources, including where needed air power, to extinguish fires before they spread. As we saw in the Monchique fire in 2018 which burned for around 8 days and the fire near Aljezur, once a fires gets hold and spreads through very windy conditions its perimeter increases and it becomes far more challenging to deal with.

This year Portugal has an increased number of helicopters and aircraft at its disposal, so wait and see if this is sufficient or there is a need, once again, to obtain the assistance of aircraft from other countries.

There is inevitable much comment regarding rural fires at present, as people are naturally concerned as it is a major public safety threat. Unfortunately there are instances (like we came across with Covid-19) which we have seen on Facebook, for people to become instant experts and although well intended, make statements and give advice on public safety issues. One example is evacuations, which coming from an unqualified source could, if followed, put people’s lives in danger. This is why Safe Communities Portugal is an official Civil Protection Volunteer Organisation to ensure that we provide official well considered information and advice. Please check the source very carefully on deciding what advice to follow.

I will be on KissFm Radio on Sunday morning at around 0915 hrs discussing the current situation regarding the extreme rural fire risk and very high temperatures. Please listen in.

Regarding Covid-19, the Minister of Health publish figures yesterday which a first sight seem disturbing as far as the

Tom Moore, Photo: Private

Algarve is concerned; namely that the RT in the Algarve was 1.17 the highest throughout the regions! Please see our news article on this subject.

Lastly we congratulate Captain Sir Tom Moore who has been knighted in the Queen’s first official engagement in person since lockdown. The investiture to honour the 100-year-old, who raised more than £32m for NHS charities, was staged in a “unique ceremony” at Windsor Castle. He has been recognised for walking more than 100 laps of his garden in Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire.Capt Sir Tom, originally from Keighley, West Yorkshire, said it was “an absolutely outstanding day”. “I am absolutely overawed,” he said. Well done and well deserved from all of us.

With that very happy note please have a Very Safe Day.

 

DGS Covid-19 Situation

The Directorate-General for Health (DGS) announced on Friday the existence of 1682 deaths and 48,077 cases of Covid-19 in Portugal since the beginning of the pandemic.

The number of deaths rose by 3 more than Thursday, while the number of infected people increased from by 312. There are 447 people hospitalized, 67 are in intensive care. The number of recovered cases rose from 32,476 to 32,790, plus 314.

Lisbon and Tagus Valley is the region where the increase in cases continues to be more significant, accounting for 75.6% of new cases, with 236 out of 312 accounted for. In number of cases, Lisbon and the Tagus Valley lead with 23,806, followed by the North (18,293, with 40 new cases), the Center (4,340, 10 new cases), the Algarve (764, seven new cases) and the Alentejo (623, 18 new cases).

Despite the increases in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, the North has the highest number of deaths (827), then Lisbon and the Tagus Valley (555), Centro (251), Alentejo (19), Algarve (15) and Azores (15).

Health

Minister of Health outlines Covid-19 transmission rate

The Minister of Health said yesterday that the transmission risk (RT) calculated by the National Institute of Health Doctor Ricardo Jorge (INSA) for the 10th to the 14th of July is 0.96, considering it “constant”, but “decreasing a little bit”.

At regional level, the distribution of RT is as follows: 1.04 in the North, 0.94 in the Center, 0.94 in the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo region, 0.89 in the Alentejo region and 1.17 in the region from the Algarve. According to Marta Temido, health authorities have continued in recent days the “policy of early detection of new cases through the intensive use of diagnostic tests” and revealed that on July 15, the last on which data are recorded, they were carried out 15,866 tests, of which 658 (4.1%) were positive.

“The trend of a significant number of tests carried out on a daily basis is maintained, with a percentage of positive cases that I can still characterize as inconsistent”, she stressed. She added that “in the 19 parishes that have most pronounced in the intervention of the teams of public health, there has been a decrease in the incidence in the last seven days”, but the measures to contain the spread of the disease are maintained.

Outbreak in Shipyard in Setúbal

Four members of the crew of a ship under repair in Lisnave and a shipyard worker have tested positive for covid-19, but the company says that it continues to work normally and to comply with the rules of the Directorate-General of health.

“A week ago, two technicians who were aboard the ship Atlantic Orchard, in the service of the shipowner, began to show symptoms of the covid-19, did the tests and the result was positive,” the spokesperson for the Lisnave, Humberto Bandeira.

“These two technicians are said to have been contaminated by another technician who, meanwhile, had already abandoned the ship,” added Humberto Bandeira, noting that tests were immediately carried out on the entire crew and about a dozen workers at the shipyard in Setúbal, who had been in contact with the ship.

According to the spokesman, the tests carried out made it possible to detect that there was one more contaminated crew member. A worker at the shipyard with covid-19 was also detected, but who, according to Lisnave, was contaminated in a family environment, so that, in total, five cases of covid-19 were detected.

Researchers to Study Vulnerabilities in Pregnancy and Postpartum

Researchers from the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences of the University of Porto (FPCEUP) will accompany couples, from the third trimester of pregnancy to the postpartum period, with the aim of realizing the vulnerabilities felt in the context of covid-19.

“The idea arose to look more closely at issues of psychological and emotional well-being, combined with the effect that this new reality of the pandemic is having on couples”, said in statements to Lusa, Mariana Carrito, from SexLab, a research group from FPCEUP.

In order to understand the vulnerabilities felt in the context of covid-19 by couples who are going to be parents for the first time, the researchers will, during the next 10 months, characterize access to health care and social support given during pregnancy and childbirth.

“We want to understand how these two factors have an impact on perinatal mental health and after birth,” said the researcher, adding that with the emergence of the pandemic, the care provided to pregnant women “suffered major impacts”, such as postponed consultations, impediment of skin-to-skin contact with the baby and absence of a companion during delivery.

Slight decrease” in the concentration of new cases in Lisbon (AML)

The Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon (AML) has recorded cases of covid-19 above the national reference since May 3, but the latest data suggest “a slight decrease” in the concentration of new cases in this region , released the INE today.

According to the National Statistics Institute (INE), in a general assessment of the period between April 6 and July 13, the progressive slowdown of new cases per 10,000 inhabitants in the Metropolitan Area of ​​Porto (AMP) stands out and, in the opposite direction, the growth of new cases in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area (AML). The AML has recorded levels ​​above the national average since May 3, said INE, in a report published yesterday.

According to the institute, data from the set of 14 days ended on July 13, the last analysed period, suggest “a slight decrease in the concentration of new cases in the AML”, since in this period this area represented 64% of the new cases in the country, when in the previous 14 days (until June 29) it had obtained 71% of the new cases at national level.

In the period of 14 days to 13 July, the emergence of new cases reached mainly the municipalities on the North bank of the AML (comprising 18 of these municipalities), with seven municipalities (Amadora, Odivelas, Sintra, Loures, Cascais, Lisbon and Vila Franca de Xira) with more than 10 new cases per 10,000 inhabitants. On July 13, there were 45.7 cases of covid-19 in Portugal per 10,000 inhabitants globally and 4.7 new cases per 10,000 inhabitants in the previous 14 days.

Pandemic Restrictions

Parishes in State of Calamity have denser population than AML

The 19 parishes in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area (AML) in a state of calamity have a population density seven times higher than that of the rest of the AML and a higher proportion of buildings with seven or more accommodations, the INE said today. .

According to the National Statistics Institute (INE), there is a “positive association” in the AML between the number of confirmed cases of covid-19 per 10,000 inhabitants and the territories with the highest proportion of buildings with seven or more accommodations and density higher population.

According to data released today, the estimated population residing in 2019 in the territory of the 19 parishes that remains in a state of calamity in the Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon was 740,911 inhabitants, representing about 25.9% of the approximately 2.9 million residents in the remaining 99 parishes of AML.

Other Health

Deaths due to high temperatures

The Director-General of Health warned today of the effects of heat on mortality, revealing that between 5 and 14 July there were “388 more deaths” than in previous years, without counting the deaths by covid-19.

“As of July 5, and without counting deaths by covid-19, there was an increase in mortality that continues to occur. By the 14th, we had already registered 388 more deaths. On the 15th and 16th, we also saw an increase in relation to homologous periods ”, noted Graça Freitas, explaining that she is making a comparison with the last five years, when the digital recording of deaths in Portugal began.

The Director-General of Health, who was speaking at the press conference on covid-19, warned of the need to drink water even when not thirsty, to avoid exposure to the sun, to ventilate homes and to be alert to groups at risk.

“The first two months of 2020 were months with fewer cases than the average for the five-year period. At the end of May, we had 2189 more deaths than the average of the previous five years. Around 2000 and few deaths were explained by covid mortality but also by a heat spike between May 23 and 30, according to data from the Instituto do Mar e da Atmosfera ”, explained Graça Freitas.

Mortality associated with heat “occurs over 85 years or even over 75,” he added.

Economy

Loss of Income and Losing Jobs Removes More Emigrants from Portugal than Pandemic

The fear of covid-19, and fear of loss of income and the fear of losing a job are leading many overseas Portuguese to postpone their visit to Portugal this summer, according to the Secretary of State for the Portuguese Communities.

In an interview, Berta Nunes stated that “Portugal is a safe country”, with land and air borders open to citizens living in the Schengen Area. “You don’t need to quarantine or bring a negative covid-19 test,” she said.

And she underlined: “We currently have no community transmission of the virus in Portugal that could put people at risk. The risk will be if people do not comply with security measures”, such as wearing a mask, social distance and hygiene. Berta Nunes also said that the increase in population in Portuguese villages, which traditionally happens in the summer due to the arrival of emigrants, does not raise major issues in terms of public health.

Travel Portugal want arrivals to the UK without quarantine

The Secretary of State for Portuguese Communities, Berta Nunes, said today she wants to see the “quarantine imposed by the United Kingdom on Portuguese people arriving in that country” being overcome as soon as possible. Berta Nunes explained that the United Kingdom is “creating some difficulties” and that emigrants who travel to Portugal, when they return, have to quarantine, hoping to see this situation changed.

“We have the problem of the United Kingdom which we hope to be able to overcome as soon as possible,” he said. “In fact, in the UK, there are also outbreaks every day and what we have are outbreaks that are controlled, we do not have an uncontrolled pandemic situation, so Portugal is a safe country”, he stressed.

The minister spoke after the signing of protocols related to the creation of the Emigrant Support Offices (GAE) of Alto Tâmega and Barroso, which took place in Montalegre, in the district of Vila Real.

For the Secretary of State, the message for the Portuguese community abroad is very clear: “Come, Portugal is a safe country and you are welcome”. Berta Nunes warned, however, that the “safety rules” in force in Portugal are complied with. For the minister, Portugal has “very few cases” and has outbreaks, as is happening in all countries.

Military personnel to be engaged in Preventive actions against rural fires this weekend

Six Navy and 18 Army patrols will exercise deterrent patrols to minimize the risk of forest fires over the weekend. Between Friday and Sunday, the Navy and the Army deployed 216 soldiers, distributed in 24 patrols. Six Navy and 18 Army patrols will exercise preventive patrol actions in 18 districts in mainland Portugal, with the aim of minimizing the risk of forest fires.

The actions will take place over the three days, in the districts of Aveiro, Beja, Braga, Bragança, Castelo Branco, Coimbra, Évora, Faro, Guarda, Leiria, Lisbon, Portalegre, Porto, Santarém, Setúbal, Viana do Castelo, Vila Real and Viseu. This commitment is the result of a request by the National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority to the Armed Forces General Staff.

Other News

British Airways to withdraw the Boeing 747 with immediate effect.

British Airways (BA) announced this Friday that it will withdraw its entire fleet of Boeing 747s “with immediate effect”, following the decrease in passenger traffic due to the covid-19 pandemic. “It is unlikely that our magnificent ‘queen of the skies’ will again operate commercial services for British Airways due to the decrease in travel caused by the global covid-19 pandemic,” the company said in a statement.

In the note, the company points out that the aircraft will “always have a special place in the” heart “of the company, but underlines that the objective is to operate” flights with more modern aircraft and with low fuel consumption “, such as the new A350 and 787, that will help “achieve zero carbon emissions by 2050”.

A British Airways , owned by the Spanish-British group IAG uses that model of Boeing since 1989 and is currently the largest operator in the world of 747-400 , the second version of the 747 initial, and capable of carrying 660 people.

The company planned to take 31 of the aircraft it owns out of circulation by 2024, but the covid-19 pandemic accelerated the decision. To deal with the covid-19 crisis, BA announced that it plans to cut up to 12,000 jobs and will start, starting July 28, to auction off part of its multi-million dollar

Madeira Situation Report

Our colleague Daniel Fernandes is currently taking a well deserved holiday so this is a shorted version of the daily report he has kindly provided

Playgrounds allowed to reopen today

The Madeira Regional Government authorised the reopening of playgrounds in the Autonomous Region of Madeira. The following rules and guidelines must be complied with:

  1. a) The owner/operator of the playground must have a contingency plan and must place, in a visible place, information on the respiratory etiquette and correct hand washing rules as well as the operating rules.
  2. b) Mandatory use of face masks by children aged 10 or older and their companion.
  3. c) Maintain social distancing – a minimum of 2 metres, unless people are from the same household or a child’s companion.
  4. d) There must be a mechanism to monitor/control the use of slides, swings and similar equipments in order to avoid gatherings of parents and children, ideally with a distancing of 3 metres.
  5. e) Respiratory etiquette must be complied with.
  6. f) It is forbidden to share materials and equipments and to bring toys to the playground.
  7. g) Owners/operators must provide an antiseptic or alcohol-based solution and its dispensers must be placed at the entrance of the playground, entrance and exit of the toilets and at the areas where there are equipments such as slides.
  8. h) The entities responsible for the playgrounds must ensure the playground is properly enclosed and there are appropriate entrance and exit points, so as to prevent gatherings and people coming into close contact with each other.
  9. i) The child’s companion or guardian must carry an antiseptic or alcohol-based solution and frequently disinfect the child’s hands.
  10. j) There must be more frequent cleaning and disinfection of the premises, surfaces and equipments. There must also be a cleaning record sheet.
  11. k) Water fountains should be avoided, even if they have a foot pedal.
  12. m) It is forbidden to eat or drink.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98133/Parques_infantis_da_Regiao_autorizados_a_reabrir_a_18_de_julho_Conheca_as_regras

Grupo Sousa to triple support for Banco Alimentar da Madeira

Grupo Sousa has renewed a partnership with Banco Alimentar da Madeira (the Madeira branch of one of the most famous food banks in Portugal). This partnership has been taking place since 2014 and has enabled Banco Alimentar da Madeira to participate in the “Papel por Alimentos” (Paper for Food) campaign, to ensure the reception of food sent by Federação Portuguesa dos Bancos Alimentares (a federation of Portuguese foodbanks) and to provide support the annual food collection campaigns.

Overall, and until 2019, 18 containers carrying 425 tons of paper were sent to the mainland, which ended up being exchanged for 34 tons of food that benefited deprived people in Madeira.

The partnership renewal came at a particularly demanding period for Banco Alimentar da Madeira, due to the social needs caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. As a result, Grupo Sousa decided to triple the amount of donations to Banco Alimentar da Madeira. This means Banco Alimentar da Madeira will receive €24,000 from Grupo Sousa. This will provide some breathing space to Banco Alimentar da Madeira. Fátima Aveiro, from Banco Alimentar, revealed there are 55 donors and that 300 people asked Banco Alimentar da Madeira to provide food.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98849/Grupo_Sousa_triplica_apoio_ao_Banco_Alimentar_da_Madeira

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98980/Banco_Alimentar_Contra_a_Fome_recebe__24_mil_euros_do_grupo_Sousa

 

Algarve

Covid-19 Algarve has 13 active outbreaks

Portugal currently accounts for a total of 206 active outbreaks in Covid-19, Health Minister Marta Temido announced today at the regular press conference on the evolution of the pandemic in the country. Of these, 13 are in the Algarve and 5 are in the Alentejo.

“It should be noted that we have 41 active outbreaks in the North, 13 in the Center, 134 in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, five in the Alentejo and 13 in the Algarve. This is, in general, the characterization of the country’s epidemiological situation”, affirmed the minister, in the presentation of the daily bulletin of the health authorities, in a sum that makes a total of 206 active outbreaks.

From 10th to the 14th of July the overall RT is 0.96, considering it “constant”, but the “Download a little bit”. At regional level, the distribution of RT is as follows: 1.04 in the North, 0.94 in the Center, 0.94 in the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo region, 0.89 in the Alentejo region and 1.17 in the region from the Algarve.

The District Civil Protection Commission of Faro, today revealed in a statement, based on data provided by the Health Authority, that there are 232 active cases in the Algarve. So far, 763 infected people have been registered, plus 7 in the last 24 hours with 514 recovered, equivalent to 67.4%.

There are 11 hospitalized patients, with 3 hospitalizations in the Intensive Care Units. The same source reports 17 deaths in the region. There are 708 people under active surveillance. 83 patients were discharged from hospital.

 Technical problems concerning 30 ventilators purchased by AMAL Algarve

The 30 hospital ventilators acquired by the Intermunicipal Community of the Algarve and offered to the Centro Hospitalar Universitário do Algarve (CHUA) “have technical problems” that prevent them from functioning, admitted today the president of the association of Algarve municipalities.

“There are some situations that have been reported to us by the hospital administration that in the tests carried out and that take the machine [fan] to the limit, there is one or another situation that does not accompany this test,” António Pina, president of AMAL, told Lusa.  The problem with the functioning of the devices in the hospitals of Portimão and Faro, acquired from a Chinese company, was raised today by the newspaper Correio da Manhã.

António Pina indicated that he is waiting for the final report about the ventilators, noting that there were “other problems with equipment that were not 100%, but that were resolved with the company’s technicians through remote reprogramming”.

“Let’s wait, because it could be resolved with a remote reprogramming with the company in China”, he stressed. The president of AMAL, the entity that aggregates the 16 municipalities in the Algarve, believes that “until the end of next week there may be an answer, a final report, even because of the anxiety that is generated with this issue”.

The mayor of Olhão also said he had been “informally alerted to the problem with the functioning of the devices by the administration of CHUA”, an entity that sends the analysis to the equipment for certification. For his part, the Secretary of State for Fisheries and coordinator of the response to covid-19 in the Algarve, José Apolinário, told Lusa that he hoped that “together with the supplier, a way will be found to resolve the situation”.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 17th July – 18th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

The Regional Health Authority reported yesterday that 2 new ‘positive’ cases of “COVID-19” have been diagnosed on the islands of São Miguel and Terceira.  This follows 926 tests, carried out in the previous 24 hours.

The ‘case’ on the island of São Miguel is a 26 year- old woman, identified as a close contact of the infected person, detected on the island of Flores and, for that reason, she was already in ‘quarantine’ for 14 days.  The ‘screening’ tests, performed on arrival and on the sixth day, had both produced ‘negative’ results and only the test, performed at the end of her ‘quarantine’ period, proved ‘positive’.

The Terceira Island ‘case’ is a 65-year-old man who also lives in the region.  He’d arrived from the mainland on the 14th of July and his first test was ‘inconclusive’ so he went into ‘quarantine’ but his ‘follow-up’ test gave a ‘positive’ result.

Both are in stable clinical conditions and ‘testing’ and ‘monitoring’ of close contacts by the health authorities are already underway. So, with these 2 new ‘infections’, a total of 159 people with “Covid-19” have been detected in the region since the outbreak began on March the 15th.  Currently there are 7 ‘active’ ‘cases’ in the Azores; 5 on São Miguel, 1 on Flores & 1 on Terceira.

 

Portugal Situation Report Friday 17th July

Introduction

Good morning to a very hot Friday. This is the time of year when the emergency services are under considerable pressure, due to emergencies due to health reasons as a result of the hot weather and off course in particular, response to rural fires.

The main news is that yesterday the Government issued a National “Situation of Alert” in respect of Forest fires that commenced 00.01 hrs today until 2359 hours Saturday 18th July. This gives special powers to the ANEPC under National Civil Protection law concerning fire prevention and operations. Details can be downloaded here. 

You will also see from time to time on our Facebook page, posts information such as “Notification to the Population” issued by the ANEPC; internal emergency operational colour codes such as “orange”; UV at 11 maximum; IPMA rural fire alerts in different colours; so there is much to take in.

This can be rather confusing, but the bottom line is that they are published for a good reason which is to keep us all safe. It is likely in the next few days there will be more of these, so please take the time to read. As an official Civil Protection Volunteer Organisation, Safe Communities Portugal helps in the dissemination of these and under an arrangement with the ANEPC, we translate their notifications into English. There is an English version of the Fire Risk chart on the IPMA site which we also translated for them, and we ask Facebook groups with an English speaking members to share this.

We would also like to take this opportunity to remind everyone on the correct use of the 112 system which is for emergencies only. Yesterday there was some confusion on this subject, over which service the caller should request when calling 112 for example the Bombeiros or GNR. When someone calls 112 and having stated the details of the emergency, the operator will decide firstly, if it requires an emergency response and if so, the most appropriate deployment given the nature of the incident the availability of resources. Once deployed all this is centrally tracked until the incident is concluded.

Please do not call the Bombeiros directly at a fire station in emergency situations as this cannot be entered into the system which is essential for proper monitoring and follow up action.

We appreciate that when calling 112, this can be stressful so please try, to avoid miscommunication, to speak as calmly and clearly as possible and answer the questions given by the 112 call operator. As we said last week Safe Communities had our own experience of this dealing from a report the other side of the world whose friend in Portugal was in a potentially life or death situation. Despite being conducted in English the system worked very well.

Regarding Covid-19 a post that was widely commented upon was the arrest of five health professionals resulting from an investigation concerning crimes of corruption, qualified fraud, document forgery and spread of disease. This involved the search of clinics where clinical analysis to detect infections of SARS-Cov-2, which causes covid-19, without being licensed or meeting the necessary conditions, namely clinical management. Highly despicable especially at this time.

So today please a reminder to follow the advice and preventive steps concerning extreme fire risk situation. Lastly remember all these temperatures given refer to the “shade temperature” so obviously it is much higher in the sun. A dip in the sea or pool certainly called for! Have a safe day.

Covid-19 DGS Situation Report

The Directorate-General for Health (DGS) announced on Thursday the existence of 1,679 deaths and 47,765 cases of Covid-19 in Portugal since the beginning of the pandemic.

The number of deaths rose by 3 from yesterday, while the number of infected people increased by 339.

There are 476 people hospitalized, 72 are in intensive care.

The number of recovered cases rose from 32,110 to 32,476, plus 366.

Health

Reguengos de Monsaraz outbreak update

Almost a month after its detection, the outbreak of covid-19 in Reguengos de Monsaraz continues without recoveries among the users of the home where it originated, according to the update of the epidemiological bulletin released today by the municipality.

The number of recovered cases in the municipality related to the outbreak detected on June 18 at the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva home (FMIVPS) rose to 21 on Wednesday (there were 20 on Tuesday), of which six are employees of the institution and 15 are cases of infection in the community.

The Mayor of Reguengos de Monsaraz was questioned in the Évora district, about carrying out tests on users, to which José Calixto replied that this process “is under the authority of the Public Health Authority”, but said he knew testing “is going on”.

Of the active cases, 84 are directly related to the FMIVPS home, distributed among 19 employees (one death, six cured) and 65 users (15 deaths), while the remaining 40 concern the community (one death, 15 cured).

Covid-19 in a hypermarket in Torres Vedras. Six infected and 100 tested

Six workers at a Grupo Sonae hypermarket in Torres Vedras, in the Lisbon district, are infected with covid-19 and a hundred have been tested and are awaiting results, the regional health authority said on Thursday.

Questioned by the Lusa agency, the Regional Health Administration of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo (ARSLVT) clarified that there are six positive cases among employees, three from the hypermarket, one from the appliance store, one from the wellness products store and another external.

According to the same source, more than a hundred employees have already been tested, waiting for the results.

Without confirming or giving data on the number of infected and tested employees, the Continente hypermarket chain confirmed to Lusa that, “on the recommendation of the local Health Authority and with the objective of preventing and early detection of cases, all employees of Continente Modelo Torres Vedras and the stores in the commercial gallery, although asymptomatic, will be tested ” .

Torres Vedras registers 168 cases of infection, of which 88 are active, 75 are recovered and eight died.

Covid 19 – GNR infections confirmed

The National Command of the GNR indicated today that the number of military personnel infected by covid-19 assigned to the subunits that comprise the Territorial Command of Bragança has increased to four, where 48 agents were tested.

According to the GNR National Command, there is one more “positive” case to add to the three already communicated in a note sent to the Lusa agency on July 7th.

The GNR Health Unit tested a total of 48 soldiers belonging to the territorial posts of Miranda do Douro, Vimioso, Bragança, Sendim, Torre de Moncorvo and Mogadouro.

GNR had already indicated that the territorial posts of Vimioso and Miranda do Douro were decontaminated by the military personnel of the Emergency Protection and Relief Unit (UEPS) of GNR.

“Guarda, through its Clinical Center, will continue to monitor the evolution of the present situation”, had already assured the Lusa the Communication and Public Relations Division of GNR.

The GNR General Command, reiterated, that the fulfillment of the Guard’s mission in Units based in Bragança was never at stake, since, in parallel with the adoption of the aforementioned security measures, the GNR Territorial Command in Bragança unleashed the necessary balancing of human resources.

Leisure

Camarate adapts to Restrictions

In the Union of Parishes of Camarate, Unhos and Apelação, near Lisbon, trade closes at 8 pm due to the state of calamity, in which residents still remain mostly indoors.

In this area of ​​the municipality of Loures, the streets are no longer full as on a normal weekday. Since March, everything changed with the arrival of the first cases of covid-19 in Portugal.

Currently, the parish that brings together Camarate, Unhos and Apelação since 2013 is one of 19 in the Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon that remain in a state of calamity until July 31, in five municipalities.

Fátima Silva, a resident of the Camarate neighborhood, spoke to the Lusa report while waiting to raise money at the ATM. He said that in the last 15 days, when the area was already covered by the most restrictive measures in relation to the rest of the Portuguese continent, things “have even been better”, agreeing with the closing of trade at 20:00.

“They have closed earlier because there were certain establishments that had a lot of people at the door, not now”, commented the resident, stressing that she is satisfied with the fact that the Government has extended the calamity situation in time.

Housing

Pandemic could be an opportunity to solve housing problems in Lisbon

The Mayor of Lisbon (CML), Fernando Medina, said yesterday that the difficulties created by the covid-19 pandemic can be transformed into opportunities to solve problems, such as access to housing, congestion and pollution.

“We cannot get out of this pandemic with the same problems that we had at the beginning of the pandemic, be it the problems of congestion, pollution, or the heavy problems in accessing housing,” defended Fernando Medina.

According to the mayor, CML is “trying to transform what was a reality in the city – many houses related to local accommodation” – which, at a time when tourism is going through difficult times, are without occupation and with their owners too in difficulties.

“Now what we are doing is trying to turn this difficulty into an opportunity. From what? To have more people living in the city, younger people, more middle classes, and a more cohesive city, more supportive with more people living in the center of Lisbon”, stressed Fernando Medina.

Transport

New rules for Driving Instruction

The new rules on driving education in the framework of the 19-covid pandemic, published today in Diário da República, provide for a distance of two meters in classes and exams and a maximum of three people in cars instruction.

After driving schools resumed activity on May 18, changes are now being made to some measures due to recent developments in the pandemic in Portugal.

The dispatch published today states that, in the context of the current epidemiological situation caused by the covid-19, contingency measures were adopted in teaching activities and driving examinations and in-person training activities for the certification of professionals, allowing the resumption of activities on 18 May.

“After more than a month after the recovery, in view of the impact of the adopted contingency measures, it is considered that a review of some measures is considered justified, also taking into account the recent developments in the epidemiological evolution in the Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon, namely the declaration the situation of calamity and contingency in some locations”, he says.

Among the new measures is the awareness of all those involved in teaching, exams and training to comply with the physical distance of at least two meters, the placement of partitions between the worker who is attending and the public or, alternatively, ensure the recommended physical distance.

Tourism

Government Challenges Portugal to Promote the Country as Tourist Destination

The Secretary of State for Tourism today challenged the Portuguese to promote the country as a tourist destination following the covid-19 pandemic, which caused Portugal to be excluded from the tourist route of several countries.

“It seems to me that at this point, within the various lines that we have been working on, we need to instigate greater communication, better communication, more positive, more assertive, more continuous about the destination of Portugal and all the various assets we have”, said Rita Marques.

The official on the sidelines of the inauguration of the first motorhome area in Ponte de Sor, in the district of Portalegre, recalled that Portugal was recognized for three consecutive years as the “best tourist destination in the world”, a situation that “calls ”The Portuguese to defend this sector with the foreign market.

“We are all [summoned], we are part of this wave, it is a wave that is not only sympathetic towards tourism workers, but also something that we all need after a period of confinement. We all need a break, to regain energy with those who are most dear to us and I think that the vacation period can be just an excellent opportunity for that to happen”, she defended.

Education

Council of Ministers approves for Digital School

The Council of Ministers today approved the expenditure of 400 million euros to launch tenders that will allow the purchase of computers and ensure connectivity within the scope of the Digital School.

In the press conference that followed the meeting of the Council of Ministers today, the Minister of Education, Tiago Brandão Rodrigues, said that the approved expenditure permit allows the purchase of equipment, connectivity and related services necessary for the Digital School, to make available the all public educational establishments between 2020 and 2021.

“In the next academic year, measures will be implemented, in different phases that can allow universal access to and use of digital educational resources. Thus, in a first phase, it is planned at the infrastructural level to purchase computers, connectivity, software licenses for public schools in order to allow these resources to be made available to students and teachers, giving priority, as already included in the Economic and Social Stabilization Program, to students covered by school social action, until reaching universal use”, said the minister.

The program also aims, added the holder of the Education portfolio, “to develop a set of measures for the digital training of teachers” and “to increase the production of new digital resources and dematerialization of physical resources, such as school textbooks”.

Education

Covid-19: Minister of Education reiterates distance of one meter between students (whenever possible)

Brandão Rodrigues endorses the words of the Director-General for Health, assuring that Graça Freitas “was very clear” and that “social distance is important, but cannot be seen in isolation”, given the existence of other measures.

The distance between students in the next school year “should be, whenever possible, one meter” and “maximized” when conditions exist for that, due to the pandemic, the Minister of Education, Tiago Brandão Rodrigues reiterated this Thursday.

Speaking after the Council of Ministers meeting, given the criticisms and doubts expressed about the guidelines for resuming face-to-face classes in schools next school year, the minister endorsed the words spoken the day before by the Director-General for Health, ensuring that Graça Freitas “was very clear” and that “social distance is important, but cannot be seen in isolation”, given the existence of other measures.

“We will work with different circuits for each group, functioning as bubbles. We will have separate groups, the existence of masks, the layout of classrooms, personal and infrastructure hygiene, respiratory etiquette, and, of course, distance, which became very clear that whenever possible it should be one meter and always as possible it should be as maximized as possible ”, he explained.

Enforcement

Five health professionals arrested for fraud and spread of disease (Covid-19)

Lisbon, 16 Jul 2020 (Lusa) – Five professionals linked to the health sector were today arrested by the Judicial Police (PJ) in an operation that involved searches of medical clinics, homes and companies and which investigates crimes of corruption, qualified fraud, document forgery and spread of disease.

According to a statement by the PJ on “Operation Therapy”, in which two men and three women were detained, this is a fraudulent scheme for the provision of treatments not reimbursed by any health subsystem, especially by the Institute for Protection and Assistance in the Disease (ADSE).

“There are indications that the suspects resorted to practices, convincing users that ozone therapy is effective in the treatment of covid-19 or that it allows them to gain immunity, exploring the fragility and vulnerability of people afraid of the virus or even infected, the suspects knowing that with the practice of these acts they can contribute for the spread of contagious disease, creating danger for the life or serious danger for the physical integrity of the victims and third parties “, states the PJ.

In these clinics, clinical analyses were also carried out, namely to detect infection by SARS-Cov-2, which causes covid-19, without being licensed or meeting the necessary conditions, namely clinical management.

The operation, in charge of the National Unit to Combat Corruption of the PJ, was carried out by 50 members of that police and had the collaboration of the Ordem dos Médicos.

 

Region Reports

Madeira situation report by Daniel Fernandes

Covid-19 update

There were no new Covid-19 cases yesterday. However, another patient was taken to the Covid-19 unit at Dr. Nélio Mendonça hospital. There are now 2 patients in hospital. Both hospitalised patients are non-residents and had previously been in isolation in the Municipality of Funchal and the other in the Municipality of Santana. The number of cases remains at 99, with 93 recoveries and 6 active cases. All active cases came from outside the Madeira archipelago and were discovered as a result of checks at Funchal Airport.

There are 4,577 people under active monitoring and 4,609 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of Wednesday, there had been 1,556 suspected cases, of which 1,457 were not confirmed.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal and Porto Santo airports, 7,130 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 18h00). Overall, 32,165 samples have been processed in the Autonomous Region of Madeira.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 45 calls from Wednesday to Thursday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,654.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,670 calls, with 155 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/16/sao-agora-dois-os-internados-com-covid-19-no-hospital-dr-nelio-mendonca/

Regional Government decision on camping in forests and protected areas

The Government Council met yesterday and announced camping is allowed as long as the following compulsory measures are complied with:

1) Compliance with a capacity limit of 50% of the normal capacity (tents/number of campers).

2) Keep social distancing – 5 metres between tents, unless campers are from the same household.

3) Gatherings are forbidden, unless they belong to the same household and have a maximum limit of 10 people.

4) Campers must social distancing – 2 metres between campers, unless they are from the same household.

5) Comply with breathing etiquette and hand-hygiene rules, and take all necessary precautions for individual protection, particularly regarding the use of face masks.

6) Sanitary facilities will remain closed, apart from those that can be regularly cleaned and disinfected.

7) Campers must collect all rubbish they produce, regardless of their type, and drop them at the proper collection points.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98887/Verifique_as_conclusoes_do_Conselho_do_Governo_desta_quinta-feira

Successful merchant ship crew change

The first merchant ship crew change, since the 13th of March, took place on Monday at the Port of Funchal. The operation involved 6 crew members, 3 who disembarked and 3 who boarded the ship. This was possible due to a special legislative and operational framework, created by the Region, to overcome the global restrictions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic so as to allow maritime ship crew changes to take place.

The crew members who had been due to board the ship were tested on arrival at Funchal Airport and were placed in isolation in a hotel while waiting for the test results. They were allowed to board the ship after the negative test result had been announced.

The crew members who disembarked the ship were tested on arrival in a Covid-19 isolation room at Port of Funchal and were placed in isolation in a hotel while waiting for the test results. They were allowed to leave the Region after the negative test result had been announced.

The operation took place offshore, using a vessel whose crew were wearing full PPE, as a precaution against potential suspected cases. Adequate social distancing was ensured between the crew who disembarked and the crew who boarded.

This operation was coordinated by APRAM – Portos da Madeira (Madeira Ports) and several entities including the shipowner, the shipping agent, the port authority, the health authorities, the maritime authority, border control and customs authority.

According to Rui Humberto Lopes, Covid Protection and Coordination Officer, the operation was judged to have been a success and since Madeira is on the path of the traditional transatlantic routes, it is expected that similar operations will take place in the future.

APORMAR – Agência Portuguesa de Marítimos (Portuguese Seafarers Agency) issued a statement highlighting that “few countries allow their ports and airports to be used for crew changes, enabling crew members to disembark and their replacements to board”. It added that as a result of the Region’s decision and availability, crew members who had been at sea for months were allowed to have a rest and to return to their countries and families, while others were able to return to work and to earn a living.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98782/Covid-19_Tripulantes_de_navio_mercante_substituidos_com_sucesso

Power cut

Empresa de Electricidade da Madeira (Madeira power supplier) announced there will be power cuts in the following days, due to planned work on the electricity supply network. The following areas will be affected:

CAMPANÁRIO

17th July – 10h030 to 10h45 & 16h00 to 16h30

– Sítio do Pinheiro & Sítio do Tranqual (partial)

– Rua Comandante Camacho de Freitas (numbers 550 to 605)

RIBEIRA BRAVA

17th July – 09h00 to 11h30

– Sítio da Boa Morte (including IGA and western entry of Túnel da Boa Morte at ER 112)

CANIÇO

18th July – 14h00 to 16h00

– Estrada Avelino Pinto (between Rua Baden Powell and Rua Encosta dos Magos)

– Rua Encosta dos Magos & Rua Baden Powell (partial)

However, power could be restored during the time frame mentioned above. So, for safety purposes, it should be assumed that there will be power at any time during this period of time.

If necessary, customers can contact the free Customer Support Service (Serviço de Apoio ao Cliente): 800 221 187.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/16/publicidade-o-fornecimento-de-energia-sera-interrompido-nos-dias-horas-e-locais-abaixo-indicados-anuncio-51-2020/

 

Algarve

Covid.19: Moto Clube de Faro criticizes cancellation of this Sunday’s parade

As Moto Clube de Faro announced on Thursday on Facebook, “for reasons beyond our control and without any consistency, the traditional parade through the city will not be held” which would be scheduled for Sunday.

Moto Clube de Faro apologizes for what happened, implying that it does not agree with the decision of the competent authorities, “… We are not together … but separated in ideas and actions”, the message reads.

Last Tuesday, José Amaro announced that they were waiting for the consent of the responsible entities, noting that the patterns of the parade would be the same as in previous editions, “without stops or gatherings of people”. The match would take place on Sunday morning in Vale das Almas towards Faro, “when we get to the city, everyone follows his route”, he stressed.

Despite the impossibility of holding the parade, Moto Clube de Faro organized a symbolic program in order to mark the 39 years of the concentration.

In this way, there is an exhibition of motorcycles, in the building where Zara once went, on Rua de Stº António, between 10 am and 11 pm, with the presence of artisans and a tattoo spot.

Albufeira beaches will have free yoga classes

During the months of July and August, the 26 beaches awarded the Blue Flag in the municipality of Albufeira welcome free Yoga classes, as well as information and environmental awareness, the municipality announced.

This is one of the actions of the municipality’s Environmental Education program, in the sense of providing well-being and physical activities to vacationers, ensuring the safety of all those present and their comfort.

The municipality informs that an information panel on the blue flag program and the marine and coastal environment is installed on each beach that runs the award. This year’s motto is “Back to the Sea… with an attitude of change”. Vacationers can thus gather information about the correct use of bathing areas, the care to be taken in the context of the pandemic, recommendations regarding sun exposure, use of waste disposal containers, existence of a first aid station, lifeguard and respective rescue equipment, as well as interdictions with respect to compliance with the rules of the beach notice.

Yoga classes will take place at 16:00 in July and at 10:00 in August.

This July the classes are on the following days and beaches: 20 – Rocha Baixinha Nascente, 21 – Rocha Baixinha, 22 – Santa Eulália, 23 – Olhos de Água, 24 – Rocha Baixinha Poente, 27 – São Rafael, 28 – Oura, 29 – Oura Leste, 30 – Manuel Lourenço and the 31st – Praia do Evaristo

 

Azores

Situation Report Azores 16th July – 17th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

The Azorean government has produced an ‘online’ ‘risk assessment’ questionnaire for people, coming to the ‘Archipelago’.  It aims to ‘streamline’ and speed up ‘arrivals’ in the region and can be accessed on this website:  https://destinoseguro.azores.gov.pt/

It is also being distributed by airlines, within the 72-hour period, leading up to flight departure.

The information collected in the questionnaire will be automatically integrated into the government’s “COVID-19” platform and will assist ‘tracking’ and ‘tracing’ of visitors if necessary.

Meanwhile, the Regional Health Authority has reported that 1,140 tests were carried out in the region in the past 24 hours but fortunately, they didn’t reveal any new ‘positive’ cases of “COVID-19”.  There has been one more recovery, a 31-year-old man who’s a resident on the island of São Miguel

So far, the region has had a total of 157 cases of infection since the outbreak began on March the 15th and currently there are just 5 ‘active’ cases.  1 of them is on the island of Flores, the other 4 are on São Miguel

 

 

 

Portugal Situation Report Thursday 16th July

Introduction

We start this morning with some good news and that is that ANEPC website, the part that deals with public information, is back up and running after being unavailable for the last 10 days. This is not a moment too soon given the fact that around 70% of the country is an extreme or very high risk of rural fires and that the whole country is at “orange” level alert in terms of  operational readiness.

In speaking to a senior ANEPC official last night he confirmed that the operational side was not affected during this period with all information being available to operational commanders.

The orange special alert state, which determines the reinforcement of monitoring and the degree of readiness of the Special Rural Fire Fighting Device (DECIR), means that the degree of risk is high and that you are in a “dangerous situation, with conditions for the occurrence of unusual phenomena that can cause damage to people and property, jeopardising their security “. Please monitor the situation very carefully and take every precaution in preventing a fire at this critical time.

Turning to Covid-19 the Minister of Economy, Pedro Siza Vieira, considered yesterday that the United Kingdom’s decision to leave Portugal off the list of safe destinations to travel has no scientific basis, even with the criterion that the country chose to follow. There is no doubt that this is echoed by the officials I have met since this was announced, and of course in general terms has been echoed by the Prime Minister of Portugal. There are now some positive indications that the number of new cases in the 19 parishes of Lisbon area is decreasing although the Situation of Calamity in those areas continues until 31st July

In the Algarve, which is most affected by the exclusion from the travel corridor the level of confirmed cases remains low compared to the rest of the country. Let us therefore hope for positive news when the UK government reviews this on 27th July.

Some bright news among all the problems at present is that Queen Elizabeth will confer the honour of knighthood on Captain Tom Moore in a ceremony on Friday, July 17 at Windsor Castle. Early on in the coronavirus pandemic, the royal family postponed investitures as a safety precaution. This week though, they’re making an exception for Captain Tom Moore, a former British Army officer, who raised more than $37 million for UK health workers in the lead up to his 100th birthday.

“I could never have imagined this would happen to me,” Moore wrote on Twitter today about the news. “It is such a huge honour and I am very much looking forward to meeting Her Majesty the Queen. It is going to be the most special of days for me.

Please note that eight districts in mainland Portugal are now under orange warning due to the forecast of continued hot weather, according to the IPMA  The districts of Braga, Porto, Leiria, Santarém, Lisbon, Setúbal, Évora and Beja will be under orange warning between 12:00 pm today and 6:00 pm on Friday, due to the persistence of high values ​​of maximum temperature. Please take extra care.

Lastly we shortly be reviewing the frequency of the publication of this situation report, which has been running for 4 months, given that there is generally less news on Covid-19, but increasing priority and attention being placed on the extreme weather and the risk of rural fires, which we have to give due attention to. In fact this is a statutory requirement given our role as an official Civil Protection Volunteer organisation under Portuguese law.

We only have a finite level of volunteers who give up their time to produce this service and we have like any organisation, to prioritise accordingly.

Headlines

Prime Minister says the country cannot take second confinement. 

The Prime Minister, António Costa, said that the country cannot take a second period of confinement, reiterating that the next winter must be prepared as soon as possible. Questioned by the PUBLICO – shortly after saying that the country that serves as an example to Portugal is experiencing a second wave of the virus – the Director-General of Health preferred not to comment on these statements.

“I don’t comment on what the Prime Minister says, said DGS when asked. We have learned a lot from this pandemic and we know that we can move from generic confinement to surgical confinement. When we say that a family has to be confined, we are doing it at a ‘micro’ level, when it is a street or neighbourhood … It is different to be at the level of a country. ”

In turn, the Assistant Secretary of State and Health, Jamila Madeira, ensures that the needs for reinforcements in hospitals and intensive care are being taken care of, emphasizing the importance on the digital aspect. “The Government is strengthening all the dynamics installed on the ground to make them available next winter”, he explained.

Rural Fires: All districts on orange alert

All districts of mainland Portugal are on special orange alert, the second most serious of a scale of four, due to the high risk of rural fire, the source of Civil Protection told Lusa yesterday.

The ANEPC stated that the special orange alert state was triggered at 00:00 yesterday and will last until midnight on Thursday, then a new assessment is made.

The orange special alert state, which determines the reinforcement of monitoring and the degree of readiness of the Special Rural Fire Fighting Device (DECIR), means that the degree of risk is high and that you are in a “dangerous situation, with conditions for the occurrence of unusual phenomena that can cause damage to people and property, jeopardizing their security “.

The ANEPC issued a warning to the population to take account of the very high maximum fire risk for the next few days due to the continued hot and dry weather.

Situation of Alert, contingency and calamity to remain until 31st July

The Council of Ministers approved, electronically, the resolution that continues the process of deflation started on April 30 and maintains the declaration of the situation of alert, contingency and calamity, depending on the territory, until July 31.

The communiqué released at the end of the extraordinary Council of Ministers states that “the situation of alert throughout the continental national territory, with the exception of the Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon (AML)”, remains thus; “The contingency situation in the AML, with the exception of the municipalities and parishes affected by the calamity situation”; “The calamity situation in the same 19 parishes in the Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon”.

The “decision takes into account that, although there is a decreasing trend in the number of new cases of disease in most regions of the national territory, there is a persistent incidence in some areas of the Regional Health Administration of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo , specifically in the northern area of ​​the Lisbon Metropolitan Area”, the document reads.

Covid-19 Statistics

Portugal registered yesterday eight more deaths and 375 new cases of infection by covid-19 compared to Tuesday, 288 of which in the region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, according to the daily bulletin of the Board -General for Health (DGS).

According to the bulletin, since the beginning of the pandemic until today, there have been 47,426 confirmed cases of infection and 1,676 deaths.

In percentage terms, since Tuesday the increase in deaths was 0.5% (from 1,668 to 1,676) and in confirmed cases 0.8% (from 47,051 to 47,426).

Lisbon and the Tagus Valley is the region where the increase in cases continues to be more significant, accounting for 77% of new cases, with 288 of 375, and three of the eight deaths recorded. The rest were three in the North (three), one in the Center and the other in Alentejo.

In number of cases, Lisbon and Vale do Tejo leads with 23,296, followed by the North region (18,215, with 31 new cases), the Center region (4,319, 22 new cases), the Algarve (750, 25 new cases) and Alentejo (596, 10 new cases).

Health

Positive Case in Figueira da Foz Closes Day Care Center

The positive confirmed case of a boy, a student in a kindergarten in Figueira da Foz, led to the closure of the daycare center he attended and put 39 people in isolation, 28 of them which children, said the director of the institutiontesterday.

According to the director, the 2nd João de Deus Garden School in Figueira da Foz “fulfilled all the measures determined by the health authority” in the face of this positive case of infection with the new coronavirus, closing the daycare center – which works in a building independent from the pre-school, at the back of the main building – and sending home 28 children and 11 employees from that valence, who are in isolation and surveillance.

Reguengos de Monsaraz Outbreak Update

The number of fatalities from the covid-19 outbreak in a home in Reguengos de Monsaraz, in the Évora district, increased to 17, after the death of an 82-year-old woman, informed the city council yesterday.

Active cases in the county went up to 125 on Tuesday (on Monday there were 126), of which 85 at the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation (FMIVPS), where the outbreak began on June 18, in addition to 40 in the community, can be read in the municipality’s communiqué.

Government says it will strengthen Intensive Care and Public Health for the winter

The Government will reinforce the units of Intensive Care, Public Health with more personnel and seek to increase the speed of tests to covid-19 to prepare for the arrival of winter, said the assistant secretary of state today and of health.

At a press conference to monitor the pandemic at the Ministry of Health, EM Lisbon, Jamila Madeira indicated that, in the supplementary budget and in the economic and social stability program, the “necessary reinforcement” in the intensive care units was concluded, which was concluded to be need in the past few months.

There will also be reinforcements in the Public Health sector for “traceability and monitoring” and an increase in laboratory capacity so that test results arrive more quickly, he said.

Jamila Madeira added that “the strategic reserve” of individual protection equipment and medicines is being reinforced at central level and by local health units and regional health administrations.

“The Government is reinforcing all the dynamics installed on the ground and will make them available next fall / winter season”, she declared.

Infarmed authorizes use of Portuguese ventilator in hospital context

The ventilator produced in Portugal called Atena received on Tuesday the authorization from Infarmed for its use in a hospital context in the fight against the covid-19, announced this Wednesday CEiiA – Center for Engineering and Development, in Matosinhos.

In a publication on the social network Facebook, CEiiA advances today that Atena was “authorized by Infarmed for use within the scope of the covid-19 procedure”.

“It was with humanity, resilience, passion and commitment that the 4Life community, through CEiiA, developed and produced the Atena ventilator in 45 days and received special INFARMED authorization yesterday (July 14) for its use in a covid-19 context”.

For the center, this is an “important step” for the national and international distribution of that invasive medical ventilator to support the treatment of patients with acute respiratory failure caused by covid-19 produced in Portugal.

The ventilator, produced in 45 days by CEiiA, within the scope of the 4Life community, brought together specialized medical knowledge, companies, universities and financial support from patrons and thousands of Portuguese.

DGS comments on Covid-19 reinfections

Asked about cases of reinfection in Portugal, the Director-General of Health says that there is no evidence, worldwide, to prove this phenomenon.

“I want to say that we still have the humility to think that we don’t know a lot about the disease. There is no unequivocal proof that this phenomenon of reinfection exists. It is known that some people who have had the disease and two negative tests can have a positive test later, when they are tested. But it does not mean that they themselves are infected or that they transmit. It can only mean that there are particles of the virus in your upper respiratory tract and that these particles are positive in the test, but that you are not able to transmit the virus to others”, adds Graça Freitas.

As for the quality of the tests, the Director-General for Health is confident with the levels of control, but recalls that slight variations in the sensitivity of these kits can occur. “In Portugal, there is quality control of tests carried out by reputable organizations”, he concluded.

Epidemiologist: “It is not inevitable that vacations bring an increase in cases” by Covid-19

The president of the National Health Council, Henrique Barros, says that more trips during the vacation period increase the risk of transmission of Covid-19, but it is not necessary for that to happen. For that he speaks of a triangle of forces that will help to contain possible outbreaks.

Henrique Barros, says that vacations do not have to be a period of increase in cases of Covid-19 in Portugal. It recognizes that there is a risk of this happening, but there are ways to avoid it if the necessary precautions are taken.

Henrique Barros, who is also responsible for the Public Health Institute of the University of Porto, begins by recognizing that if there is a movement of people “there are likely to be more cases”. But immediately afterwards he emphasizes that this is not a story that necessarily has to have this ending. “It is not inevitable that vacations bring an increase in cases,” he says in an interview with Renascenca news.

The protective shield for the hypothetical growth of cases at the time of July and August, in which the Portuguese traditionally take their holidays, is for this epidemiologist composed of a triangle: people are at one of the corners and “each one of us taking on the duty to protect yourself and others “, at the other end is” the set of rules and some behavioural surveillance “, and at the third” we must have a public health capable of intervening on each identified case “.

Travel

Cruise disembarkation ban extended until July 31

The Government has decided to maintain the ban on cruise ships for another two weeks, until July 31. The information has just been confirmed by a source from the Ministry of Infrastructure.

The same source reveals that the order extending the restrictions will be published this afternoon in Diário da República.

The only exceptions apply to Portuguese citizens or holders of residence permits in Portugal.

In addition, and as has been the case since March, cruises will only be able to dock for repair and maintenance work on vessels.

In the order, the government justifies this decision with the need to contain possible lines of dissemination of Covid-19, since the epidemiological situation, both in Portugal and in other countries, is not yet fully controlled.

UK Air Restrictions

The Minister of Economy, Pedro Siza Vieira, considered yesterday that the United Kingdom’s decision to leave Portugal off the list of safe destinations to travel has no scientific basis, even with the criterion that the country chose to follow.

“These are completely different situations, what happens in Lisbon and in the rest of the territory, which has very low levels of incidence”, he added.

The official also stressed that the level of availability of the national health system was never under ‘stress’, thus managing to respond to the pandemic.

The United Kingdom is the main outbound market for tourists to Portugal, having accounted for 19.2% of overnight stays from foreigners in 2019 and has been recording successive growth since 2013, only interrupted in 2018, according to data from INE.

The preferred destinations for British guests were the Algarve (63.4% of overnight stays in the market), Madeira (18.5%) and the Lisbon Metropolitan Area (10.8%).

On July 3, the United Kingdom announced which “international travel corridors” it would resume from the 10th of the same month, excluding Portugal from that list.

Portuguese diplomacy has already reacted, considering the United Kingdom’s decision to exclude Portugal from the “international travel corridors” as “absurd”, “wrong” and that causes “a lot of disappointment”, still bringing serious economic consequences and mutual trust, he stated.

Government warns Portuguese against holidays in distant destinations

The Government yesterday warned Portuguese travellers if they plan holidays in “exotic destinations or with weak connections to Portugal” that they should not count on repatriation operations such as those carried out at the beginning of the covid-19 pandemic.

“We are asking the Portuguese to take vacations in Portugal, we are suggesting that they avoid non-essential trips abroad and we are warning that, if they are now going to exotic destinations or with weak connections to Portugal, they do not count on a repatriation operation with the dimension and the speed with which they were organized in March and April”, said the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Augusto Santos Silva.

Portugal with open borders ensures no obstacles for Emigrants

The Secretary of State for Communities, Berta Nunes, guaranteed yesterday during a debate with representatives of Portuguese communities, that land and air borders are open and there are no barriers to entry and exit from Portugal.

During the digital conference “Portugal Seguro – Férias dos Tempos de Pandemia”, organized by the PS parliamentary group, Berta Nunes stated that “Portugal is a safe country” and that, in addition to the cases identified in 19 parishes in Greater Lisbon, “the rest of the country has few cases ”.

The minister began by clarifying that Portugal has open land and air borders.

“Where are the main communities – Germany, Switzerland, France, Luxembourg, there is no problem coming and going, except for the situation in the United Kingdom, which we hope will change,” he said.

For Berta Nunes, the current “new normality” should not prevent circulation, “nor should it prevent Europe from opening the internal market”.

Netherlands Travel advice to Portugal

As we are still receiving enquiries concerning Dutch travel advice to Portugal here is the latest position we are aware off.

According to the Netherlands Foreign Ministry “The number of coronavirus infections in the region around Porto (Portugal Norte) is stable. The colour of this region has therefore been adjusted from ‘orange’ (only necessary travel) to ‘yellow’ (note: safety risks). In the Lisbon region (Lisboa e Vale do Tejo) there is still a local outbreak of the corona virus and the travel advice remains ‘orange’.

Travel only to the region around Lisbon (Lisboa e Vale do Tejo) if necessary.

“If you return to the Netherlands from the Lisbon region, it is urgent to go to home quarantine for 14 days. Always follow the Dutch and local corona rules. For more information, see the ‘Coronavirus’ section.”

Please note for those arriving in Portugal from the Netherlands there is no restrictions on entry by the Portuguese authorities other than you will be subject to temperature check and if failed then further health screening the same as for other countries originating in Europe

For any questions on this subject we recommend that you contact the Dutch Embassy in Lisbon at 21 391 4900

Spain – In the Basque Country, masks will be mandatory on public roads

The Health advisor of the Basque Country’s regional government announced that the use of masks is now mandatory on public roads and in closed spaces for public use, regardless of social distance. The measure goes into effect at 12:00 am on Thursday.

In this way, the Basque Country has adopted the same measure that other Spanish autonomous communities have approved, including the three bordering the Basque Country: Cantabria, La Rioja and Navarra.

The measure is included in an order announced by the regional councillor, Nekane Murga, during a press conference, in which she said that it is not possible to speak of a “second wave” of contagions in the region, but of a possible confirmation that the related transmission with leisure “is clearly on the rise”.

Environment

Centros da Quercus received 437 injured animals during confinement

The three Wild Animal Recovery Centers, managed by the environmental association Quercus, received more than 400 injured animals of more than 87 species during the confinement period, due to covid-19. Among the more than 87 species accepted are storks, owls, eagles, vultures, hedgehogs, otters and badgers, with some of these species having a high conservation status, such as the Black Vulture, the Milhafre-real, the Azores, the Peregrine Falcon, and the Abelheiro Falcon.

The animals were collected by the Nature and Environment Protection Service (SEPNA) of GNR, by nature watchers at the Institute for Nature Conservation and Forests (ICNF) and, to a lesser extent, by private individuals.

The Castelo Branco Wild Animals Study and Recovery Center (CERAS), the Montejunto Wild Animals Recovery Center (CRASM) and the Santo André Wild Animals Recovery Center (CRASSA) are part of the National Network of Recovery Centers Fauna, under the supervision of the ICNF.

Specimens of wild fauna are collected or seized, taken to the centers, treated and, whenever possible, returned to the natural environment after recovery.

Regions

Madeira Situation report by Daniel Fernandes

Covid-19 update

There were no new Covid-19 cases yesterday. The number of cases remains at 99, with 93 recoveries and 6 active cases. All active cases came from outside the Madeira archipelago and were discovered as a result of checks at Funchal Airport. Three active cases are from Madeira residents and three are from non-residents. There are 2 active cases in Funchal (1 resident and 1 non-resident), 2 active cases in Santa Cruz (1 resident and 1 non-resident), 1 active case in Santa Cruz (1 resident) and 1 active case in Santana (non-resident). One patient remains in the Covid-19 unit at Dr. Nélio Mendonça hospital.

There are 4,314 people under active monitoring and 3,908 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of Tuesday, there had been 1,556 suspected cases, of which 1,457 were not confirmed.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal and Porto Santo airports, 6,268 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 18h00). Overall, 31,499 samples have been processed in the Autonomous Region of Madeira.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 26 calls from Tuesday to Wednesday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,609.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,653 calls, with 154 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/15/nao-ha-novos-casos-covid-19-a-reportar-continuam-6-activos-um-dos-quais-internado/

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98797/Casos_ativos_de_covid-19_confinados_em_Santana_Santa_Cruz_Machico_e_Funchal

Madeira Regional Government in negotiations for tourists to be tested at the country of departure

Miguel Albuquerque, President of the Madeira Regional Government, revealed that the Regional Government has been involved in negotiations so that tourists from the main source markets of tourism (for example England and Germany) can be tested before flying into Madeira. He said such an approach, in cooperation with tour operators, would be less risky and more practical. However, he also said this idea will only succeed if there are affordable prices.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98793/Madeira_negocia_para_testar_na_origem_turistas_dos_principais_mercados_emissores

Consuls and hotel representatives toured Covid-19 monitoring units

The Consuls of Belgium, Finland, France, Norway and Spain and some of the Region’s hotel representatives toured the Public Health Unit (Unidade de Saúde Pública) at Bom Jesus Health Centre (Centro de Saúde do Bom Jesus). This unit has a multidisciplinary team led by Dr. Maurício Melim, a doctor specialised in public health, that is working everyday to monitor the Covid-19 situation in the Autonomous Region of Madeira.

Afterwards, the same group headed to Madeira International Airport (Funchal), where it had the opportunity to visit the tracking and epidemiological surveillance unit that has been dealing with all passengers who have landed since the 1st of July.

Pedro Ramos, the Madeira Health and Civil Protection Secretary, highlighted the importance of these units in ensuring a safe reopening of the Region. He also thanked all the entities that were represented on this visit that allowed their representatives to see for themselves the Regional Government strategy for preventing Covid-19 in the Region.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98807/Consules_e_hoteleiros_visitaram_unidade_de_rastreio_a_covid-19

Funchal Municipality promoting “Stock Off Funchal”

The Municipality of Funchal is promoting the “Stock Off Funchal” campaign, which aims to help the Funchal city centre shops to promote themselves, increase sales and make customers aware of their brands and discounts. Shops must have special offers and discounts that boost their business, increase sales and stock renewal. This digital marketing campaign is part of the Municipality’s reopening strategy and is taking place until the 31st of August. So far, 30 shops have already signed up to this scheme.

Customers can find out all the participating shops, divided by categories, on its Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/stockoffunchal/). Shop owners can submit an application by filling an online form (https://forms.gle/TmVKNPfojwwgsBcQ9). The law on discounts and other promotional offers must be complied with. The Municipality of Funchal is available to answer any queries related to this campaign, by email (stockoff@cm-funchal.pt) or by telephone (291 211 041).

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98783/CMF_promove_Stock_Off_Funchal_ate_31_de_agosto

Flights cancelled or diverted due to heavy winds

An easyJet flight from Lisbon had to return to Lisbon and an easyJet flight from Porto had to return to Lisbon due to heavy winds at Cristiano Ronaldo International Airport (Funchal). In addition, a TAP flight to Lisbon, the first flight of the day (07h10), was cancelled. There were no departures or landings at Funchal Airport for most of the day. Binter, which has flights between Funchal and Porto Santo, did not operate any flights either.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98734/Vento_forte_no_Aeroporto_da_Madeira_faz_divergir_mais_um_voo_proveniente_de_Lisboa_

Possible water supply disruption in Santa Luzia

The Municipality of Funchal announced that there will be sscheduled work on the water supply chain will be carried out today, from 09h00 until 16h00, at Rua Pedro José de Ornelas, in Santa Luzia. This could result in a water supply disruption at the aforementioned street.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98761/Abastecimento_de_agua_podera_ser_afetado_amanha_na_Rua_Pedro_Jose_de_Ornelas

 

Algarve

Covid-19 Situation

The Algarve has 750 cases, plus 25 since Tuesday and remains at 15 deaths to date.

According to DGS these are divided as follows:: Albufeira has 127 , ( 2 deaths ); Faro – 106; Lagos – 95; Portimão – 95 , ( 3 deaths ) ; Loulé – 87 , ( 5 deaths ); Tavira – 35; Silves – 28;  Olhão – 25; Vila Real de Stº António – 17, ( 2 deaths ); Monchique – 14; Lagoa – 13 , ( 2 deaths ); São Brás de Alportel – 7 , ( 1 death ); Aljezur – 6; Vila do Bispo – 4; Castro Marim – 4

AMAL meets with businessmen and associations for a strategy to combat the effects of Covid-19

Within the scope of the Special Recovery Plan for the Algarve, the Intermunicipal Community of the Algarve (AMAL) promoted yesterday a meeting with businessmen and associations from various economic sectors in the region.

The meeting was attended by the Secretary of State for Fisheries and Coordinator for the fight against COVID-19 in the Algarve, José Apolinário, and the Secretary of State for Tourism, Rita Marques and had as main objective to make a survey of proposals and contributions to present to the Minister of Economy, within the framework of a regional strategy to combat the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Algarve economy.

From the set of proposals presented during the meeting, AMAL highlights in a statement, three: to extend the possibility of using the simplified Lay-off until Easter 2021 (it is supposed to end on July 31 of this year); guarantee and bet that the Lay-off regime can be combined with training and qualification of human resources who cannot work during this period and also extend the tax and banking moratoriums to a period greater than March 2021.

The Secretary of State for Tourism, Rita Marques, after taking note of the various proposals presented, said that she will communicate them to the Minister and that “the plan with the measures for the recovery of the economy should be approved by the end of July”. He also left the guarantee that “on the Government’s side there is urgency and sensitivity for this issue and for the situation that is being experienced in the Algarve region”, words reiterated by the Secretary of State José Apolinário, who reinforced this idea stressing that “the contacts with the government have been frequent and that the executive has been particularly concerned with the economic situation in the Algarve”.

António Pina, President of AMAL, considered “fundamental that we make the concerns of entrepreneurs from all sectors of the region reach the Minister of Economy, because if tourism represents an important slice in our economy, we do not want, nor can we, stop worrying about all the other sectors, especially with the micro companies in our region and their managing partners, who need even more attention at this time”. The mayor also said that “if, on the one hand, we do not know when this pandemic context will end, on the other hand, we are sure that we are evolving into a very complex situation that jeopardizes the survival of many companies in the Algarve”. António Pina concluded, arguing that “although the current situation is quite worrying,

EDP ​​Distribuição signs protocol with Monchique City Council for forest fire prevention

EDP ​​Distribuição has signed a protocol with the Municipality of Monchique, which aims at mutual collaboration in the development of forest fire prevention measures, in municipal and private domains.

This agreement provides for the creation of safety conditions in low voltage electrical lines, as well as for the execution of the respective work to be carried out by mixed teams between the entities involved. According to a statement from EDP, the document also contemplates the intervention of these mixed teams in situations of accumulation of vegetation in the lanes next to the power lines whenever they coincide with the management and fuel bands associated with the municipal road network.

The protocol established between the two entities also provides for the donation of a biotritator, equipment for the disposal of residues from the cleaning of vegetation, which is intended for activities exclusively dedicated to the prevention of forest fires and will be used by the Municipality in these tasks. The equipment was delivered today to the municipality, in a meeting attended by António Leal Sanches, director of EDP Distribuição and Rui André, president of the Municipality of Monchique.

As the operator of a 179,000 km long aerial network, 28,000 of which are installed in forested areas, EDP Distribuição is present throughout the continental territory.

Over the past 12 years, it has invested a total of 88 million euros in the management of vegetation, of which 16 million refer to this year’s investment.

 Albufeira extends application period to support fund for companies

Applications for the Albufeira Municipality’s Business and Associative Support Fund have been extended until July 31, the municipality announced.

You can apply for this support, in the amount of 1 million euros, catering and similar activities, trade in retail goods, provision of services, industry and agriculture, by emailing:  age@cm-albufeira.pt .

This extension of the final date for the submission of applications, according to the Mayor of Albufeira, aims to “give the opportunity for a greater number of entrepreneurs to gather the necessary documentation for the instruction of these applications”.

Applicants must not have had a turnover in 2019 greater than 150 thousand euros and must demonstrate that they had been open for at least eight consecutive months in the same year, with the exception of seasonal activities.

If the support is approved, the beneficiaries are obliged to keep their respective activities open and to maintain jobs until December 31 of this year.

The Business and Associative Support Fund intends to support the treasury of companies located in the municipality of Albufeira and whose establishments were forced to close due to the covid-19 pandemic, with consequent abrupt declines in their productivity.

Bathing area at Odeleite dam will be ready by the end of the year

The Odeleite Dam Nautical Center will be completed by the end of the year, after the project has been recovered and financed with a loan from the European Investment Bank, Filomena Sintra, vice-mayor of the Municipality of Castro Marim, said.

The work will allow the construction of a structure with swimming pools and a set of supports so that the main dam in the eastern Algarve has bathing use.

Its completion was scheduled for before the summer, but this goal was exceeded due to difficulties in final approval of the project in the first two years of the municipal mandate, when the Castro Marim City Council lost the absolute majority of the PSD, recovered in 2019 after the midterm elections, justified councilwoman Filomena Sintra.

Upon recovering the absolute majority, the PSD launched a new tender, requested a loan of around 400 thousand euros from the European Investment Bank to finance the national contribution of the work, which has a total cost of 700 thousand euros, and delivered the works to a new contractor, after, in the first half of the mandate, the PS opposition and the Castro Marim Primeiro Movement prevented its execution as originally planned, explained Filomena Sintra.

Azores

Situation Report 16th July 2020 from our colleagues in the Azores

The Regional Government of the Azores decided to extend the situation of public calamity on the five islands that have air connections to the outside of the archipelago, until August 1st, keeping the rest on alert, it was disclosed yesterday.

“The permanent monitoring of the covid-19 pandemic in the Azores has allowed us to come to the conclusion that, in view of the global pandemic situation, and taking into account the opening of air connections from abroad to the islands of Santa Maria, São Miguel, Terceira, Pico and Faial, maintaining the situation of public calamity is justified”, said the deputy regional secretary of the Presidency for Parliamentary Affairs Berto Messias.

Meanwhile, the Regional Health Authority has reported that the 1,285 tests were carried out in the region in the past 24 hours but fortunately, didn’t reveal any new ‘positive’ cases of “COVID-19”.

There has been one recovery, an 18-year-old man, resident on the island of São Miguel

So far, the region has had a total of 157 cases of infection since the outbreak began on March the 15th and currently there are 6 ‘active’ cases.  1 of them is on the island of Flores, the other 5 are on the island of São Miguel.

 

Introduction

Good morning – Although traditionally our introduction focuses on Covid-19, today we are giving priority to the extreme risk of rural fires in the next few days and for good reason.

Yesterday the Secretary of State for Internal Administration, Patrícia Gaspar,  warned “of a very complicated meteorological scenario” in the coming days, with the potential for occurrences of forest fires “difficult to manage” and which can become “almost catastrophic”.

Of course this at a time when the ANEPC dashboard has been down for 10 days, in what can only be considered a serious failure.

Patricia Gaspar

This is a very stark warning and it is essential that we all follow what Patricia Gaspar warned of “zero tolerance” by not burning debris or causing any fire. We have covered this in more detail, in our headline report, but please be aware of a probable escalating situation in the next few days. At the slightest indication of smoke, call 112 immediately. If there is a fire near you any delay could put you and your family at risk as fires can move very quickly with these very dry and windy conditions. Please ensure you are aware of the self-protection measures, which can be downloaded from our website.

On a related subject I am going to raise a slightly controversial topic of who exactly are those brave persons who fight fires and how we acknowledge their fantastic work?

We often see on Facebook thanks going to the Bombeiros; one yesterday saying “I hope the Bombeiros remain safe”. Certainly no one would disagree with that, but there are far more people other than the Bombeiros in the front line of fighting fires and in my view seldom, except from our page, get the recognition they richly deserve. These are the GNR GIPS who are the first responders in many fires. They travel in the helicopters, land in high risk situations in fire scenes often with no land support, unfold the water buckets and then try and extinguish fires until support by the Bombeiros arrives.

Then there are the aircraft/helicopters pilots flying low through smoke in turbulent conditions trying to avoid power lines – reportedly the most dangerous work a pilot can undertake. Coincidentally it was yesterday that the Government announced the findings of the helicopter crash in Valongo, Porto district, on September 5, 2019, during a fire-fighting operation causing the death of the pilot, Noel Ferreira.

Then there are INEM doctors and medical teams who treat people at fire scenes and the GNR who help evacuate people when fires are approaching. So when you next see a fire and wish to thank those on the scene, please remember the bravery and skill of ALL those involved and thank them accordingly.

With that note please have a very Safe Day with special attention to the fire situation.

Headlines

Government warns of possible occurrences of fires that will be difficult to manage

The Secretary of State for Internal Administration today warned of “a very complicated meteorological scenario” in the coming days, with the potential for occurrences of forest fires “difficult to manage” and which can become “almost catastrophic”.

“Today, what we can say is that we are going to face days of enormous complexity and very high fire risk,” Patrícia Gaspar told journalists, at the end of the meeting of the National Operational Coordination Center, at the ANEPC), where it was analysed what happened in the last days and the expected risk until next Friday.

According to the official, this week there will be strong winds and fire propagation speeds “much above average”.Patrícia Gaspar stressed that about 70% of the country’s municipalities, especially in the central, northern and Algarve regions, are at maximum or high risk of rural fire.

“We are going to face a very complicated meteorological scenario with a potential for occurrences that are difficult to manage”, he stressed. Currently, the entire country is on a special yellow (operational) alert due to the risk of fire, with the exception of the district of Santarém, which is on orange alert (second most severe of a scale of four).

The Secretary of State explained that this situation will be “reassessed today and it is highly probable” that the ANEPC will have to raise to orange alert some of the districts that are currently on yellow alert, and it is even possible to raise “to a higher level if some are confirmed of forecasts”, namely for the highest special alert state, levelred.

“Everything will depend on this articulation that we will maintain in the coming days with the IPMA and due to this confirmation, ANEPC will act accordingly”, she said.

Covid-19 DGS Situation Report

Portugal registered six more deaths and 233 new cases of covid-19 in the last 24 hours. Since March, there have been 1668 deaths and a total of 47051 confirmed cases of infection with the new coronavirus.

Lisbon and the Tagus Valley recorded 143 new confirmed cases of the disease. There are six more people hospitalized in intensive care.

According to the daily pandemic data update bulletin in Portugal, an additional 485 people have recovered from infection with the new coronavirus.  There are five more hospitalized with covid-19, bringing the total to 472, with six more in intensive care units (total of 69 people).

The six deaths registered in the document released this Tuesday by the DGS occurred in the region of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, which also registers most of the new cases of infection: 143 of the total of 233 new records, corresponding to 61.4% of the daily total. All health regions in mainland Portugal saw the number of infected people increase.

Health

Doctors are exhausted and extra payment will have limited effect – Union

The president of the Independent Doctors Union (SIM) says that the extra payment to recover the activity suspended because of the pandemic will have a limited effect as the doctors are exhausted and most have already exceeded 150 hours overtime.

The official considers that the ordinance published today, which approves the exceptional regime of incentives for the recovery of assistance activity not carried out because of the pandemic of covid-19, “is the Government throwing sand in the eyes of the Portuguese”.

“Of the billions of the program, we are talking about pennies for investment in the National Health Service,” said Roque da Cunha, stressing that the essential thing is to invest in hospital infrastructure, equipment and human resources.

“The investment must be in hospital infrastructure, in hospital equipment. To perform surgeries, it is necessary to make a set of complementary means of diagnosis and many hospitals have worse conditions than the private ones”, he said.

Carregado Factory Outbreak Update

The number of infected by covid-19 rose to 54 at the Geberit ceramics factory in Carregado, in the municipality of Alenquer, was released today at a press conference.

The Public Health coordinator of the Regional Health Administration of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, Mário Durval, said that 54 of the 419 workers tested are positive, while the rest were negative.

“It is the final number of tests”, he clarified, adding that the infected workers in this company in the district of Lisbon are recovering in home isolation and none are hospitalized.

The official said that the “outbreak is under control” after the infected workers have been identified and isolated from them. On the other hand, surveillance contacts are being made with people close to the infected patients. The outbreak came when, two weeks ago, two workers showed symptoms, took the covid-19 diagnostic test and found it positive, which implied the progressive testing of the total number of workers.

Positive case of a pre-school student in Figueira da Foz solation

At issue is a pre-school student at the 2nd João de Deus Garden-School of Figueira da Foz, who will have been infected in a family context and who was already in isolation.

Figueira da Foz health delegate, José Farias, confirmed the positive case of the boy “aged three or four”, adding that the children and others who had contact with him in the kindergarten “have gone home and are in isolation”.

“They are going to be in isolation. If they have symptoms, contact the Saúde 24 line or your family doctor to determine the next steps,” namely testing covid-19, he added. “What is fundamental is to promote isolation, this is what allows breaking an eventual transmission chain”, declared the health delegate.

Reguengos de Monsaraz outbreak update

The Portuguese Nurses Union (SEP) demanded yesterday to know the conditions in which displaced professionals are working to provide care to the users of the Reguengos de Monsaraz home where an outbreak of covid-19 emerged.

“We have to know in concrete terms in which conditions these nurses are being displaced” to work in Reguengos de Monsaraz, said Celso Silva, director of the SEP’s Alentejo.

The union leader questioned whether the nurses’ professional insurance “covers this trip and the place where they are performing their duties” and whether they were “trained in the use of personal protective equipment”. The outbreak was detected on June 18, at the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation (FMIVPS) home, in Reguengos de Monsaraz, in the Évora district, according to the most recent data, 126 active cases, 16 deaths and 20 people healed.

Economy

Guarda council authorises installation of terraces as bars/restaurants in the Historic Centre

The Guarda City Council authorized the installation of terraces in Praça Velha and Rua Francisco de Passos, in the historic center, with the aim of helping the economic recovery of businesses affected by the covid-19 pandemic.

The municipal measure began in Praça Velha, with the permission to operate esplanades for four bars in that central area of the city and extended, on Friday, to Rua Francisco de Passos, also known locally as Rua Direita.

According to the president of the municipality, Carlos Chaves Monteiro, the municipality authorized the installation of terraces on the public road so that businessmen in restaurants and bars in the historic center can have “some dynamism” in the business that was affected by the pandemic.

The mayor said that the temporary installation of the four bars in Praça Velha, in Largo da Sé Catedral, was taken because the businessmen of the beverage sector housed in the old part of the city “did not receive a single customer”.

Sport

Mayor of Porto appeals to supporters to avoid concentrations in title celebrations

The Mayor of Porto, Rui Moreira, appealed to the fans’ civility, asking that celebrations and gatherings be avoided when the winning teams of the national football competitions are determined.

In a statement released this Monday, he appealed to the people of Porto to “given the approach of the end of the National Football Championship and the Portuguese Cup final, maintain the same civility and responsible attitude that they have adopted in recent months”, stressing that, in this atypical year, celebrations and gatherings “must be avoided, in order to honour the sacrifices that, individually and collectively, citizens have been able to make in times as difficult as this”.

“I have to appeal to the civic spirit and the spirit of solidarity of all so that they understand that what has been achieved in the last few months in the city, with many individual sacrifices, must be continued”, points out the Mayor of Porto in a message of video recorded this Monday from the Porto Chamber.

Spain

Covid-19: Spain registers increase of cases with 263 and three deaths in one day

Spain recorded 263 cases of people infected with the new coronavirus in the last 24 hours, almost 100 more than on Monday, and three people died with the covid-19, according to the Ministry of Health. Spanish health.

The report released today with the update of the epidemiological situation in the country updated the total number of people infected since the beginning of the pandemic to 256,619, of which 263 were diagnosed on the last day.

The autonomous community of Aragon is the region with the most new cases (81), followed by Catalonia (66), Andalusia (26) and Madrid (25). On the other hand, there are now 28,409 the total number of deaths due to the pandemic, three more than on Monday. The daily report with the epidemiological situation informs that 125,797 people with the covid-19 have already passed through the hospitals, having received 165 in the last week.

Enforcement

Stones thrown at PSP at in enforcing pandemic measures – four arrested

PSP made four arrests in Sacavém “in an action to enforce pandemic measures” on Monday, with agents being stoned and responding by firing warning shots, a police source said.

The action was related to the closure of establishments within the scope of the measures imposed in response to the pandemic, with the police being met at Quinta do Mocho by a group throwing of stones and bottles at them, explained a source from the Lisbon Metropolitan Command of the PSP.

The police “were forced to have a more muscular intervention” and ended up “firing in the air”, in order to “guarantee public order”, added the PSP spokesperson. The four arrests are due to “people’s behaviour in the face of police action,” he said.

The PSP operation came as a result of complaints that pointed to the fact that commercial establishments remain open after the established schedule in the scope of combating the spread of covid-19, with the agents being confronted with the gathering of people in the place, he concluded.

Other news

Zero tolerance in relation to the use of fire

The Secretary of State for Internal Administration, Patrícia Gaspar, said that the next few days are “of enormous complexity and very high fire risk” and that “tolerance is zero” in relation to the use of fire is necessary.

Patrícia Gaspar was speaking at the end of the meeting of the National Operational Coordination Center, at the National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority, where it was analyzed what happened in the last days and the risk expected until next Friday.

Recalling that the situation is assessed daily between ANEPC and the Portuguese Institute of the Sea and the Atmosphere (IPMA), the Secretary of State said that the meteorological context says that “any occurrence that may occur in the coming days has an enormous potential for developments almost catastrophic ».

Patrícia Gaspar stressed that about 70% of the country’s municipalities, especially in the central, northern and Algarve regions, are at maximum or high risk of rural fire. The Secretary of State also appealed to people “not to use any kind of fire in rural areas”.

“We are going to face a very complicated meteorological scenario with a potential for occurrences that are difficult to manage,” he said, adding that the priority in fighting fires is also the protection of the operational personnel involved.

Ministry of Internal Affairs opens investigation into Castro Verde fire

The Minister of Internal Administration announced this Tuesday the opening of an inquiry into the forest fire that broke out on Monday in Castro Verde and in which four firefighters were injured, two seriously.

An official source from the Ministry of Internal Affairs told the Lusa agency that Eduardo Cabrita requested the inquiry from the National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority (ANEPC).

During the firefighting that took place on Monday in Castro Verde, Beja district, two firefighters were seriously injured, both from the Cuban corporation, and were transported by helicopter to the hospitals of Santa Maria and São José, in Lisbon, having suffered burns.

The other two firefighters, who suffered minor injuries, one from the Ferreira do Alentejo corporation and the other from the Castro Verde corporation, were assisted at the scene

Volunteer firefighters want new personal protective equipment

The Portuguese Association of Volunteer Firefighters yesterday asked for the reinforcement and replacement of personal protective equipment used by firefighters to combat rural fires, which are often “overused”, to be reinforced and replaced immediately.

In a statement, the Portuguese Association of Voluntary Firefighters (APBV) says that it has been following the recent firefighting accidents involving teams of volunteer firefighters closely, stressing that “regardless of the circumstances in which they occurred” will be “certainly clarified in the investigations” that are being made at the request of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

This association says that it has long been warning of “the need to reinforce and replace the personal protective equipment used by the teams of volunteer firefighters committed to fighting rural fires, which in many situations are overused”. According to APBV, voluntary fire brigades have not received personal protective equipment since 2014 and are “without replacement capacity”, which means that many of the equipment used in combat is now “six years in use and hundreds of washes”.

APBV also mentions that last week it sent a letter to the Minister of Internal Administration, Eduardo Cabrita, to address this need, but until today it has not received any response.

Fires: Collision with power lines caused helicopter crash in Valongo – report

The collision with electric lines was the cause of the helicopter accident that fought a fire in Sobrado, Valongo, Porto district, on September 5, 2019, causing the death of the pilot, Noel Ferreira, concluded the investigation.

The final report of the Office for the Prevention and Investigation of Aircraft Accidents and Railway Accidents (GPIAAF), to which the Lusa agency had access today, explains that, when approaching for the second water start, “when crossing an obstacle constituted by high voltage lines ”, the AS350-B2 bucket and tail rotor touched the cables, leading to loss of control of the device.

“The loss of control of the aircraft was inevitable and a consequent fall in rotation, covering a total distance of 84 meters until it immobilized on its left side, six seconds after the impact with the cables. After the collision with the ground, an intense fire immediately broke out and consumed the aircraft in its entirety. The pilot and sole occupant of the aircraft was fatally injured, “says GPIAAF.

Noel Ferreira, 36, was also a pilot of the Portuguese Air Force at Squadron 751, based in Montijo, which operates the EH-101 helicopter in search and rescue missions, and also commander of Cete’s Voluntary Firefighters, in Paredes, district of Porto, which, “at the time of the accident, was among others, fighting the fire on the ground”.

 

Region Reports

 Algarve

DGS Algarve statistics

In the Algarve, there are 17 new cases of infection to be registered according to the DGS bulletin, there are now 725 occurrences.

  • Albufeira has 127 , ( 2 deaths );
  • Faro – 106; Lagos – 95;
  • Portimão – 95 , ( 3 deaths );
  • Loulé – 87 , ( 5 deaths );
  • Tavira – 35; Silves – 28 ;
  • Olhão – 25;
  • Vila Real de Stº António – 17 , ( 2 deaths );
  • Monchique – 14; Lagoa – 13 , ( 2 deaths );
  • São Brás de Alportel – 7 , ( 1 death );
  • Aljezur – 6;
  • Vila do Bispo – 4 and
  • Castro Marim – 4

Moto Clube de Faro prepares parade “without gatherings”

This year there is no gatherings of the Moto Clube de Faro, due to the restrictions imposed by the pandemic Covid.19, but even so, they will not fail to mark their 39 years.

President of Moto Clube de Faro José Amaro stressed that the pandemic “forced us to cancel the gathering as we understand that health is first and we will follow all the rules of the competent authorities”.

He stated that he wishes this situation to pass as soon as possible, “so that next year, we can join together again”. In what would be the concentration week, however, some initiatives are planned at the local level.

José Amaro explained that a motorcycle exhibition opened today, in the building where Zara once went, on Rua de Stº António, and which will be open until next Tuesday from 10 am to 11 pm, with the presence of artisans and tattoos point.

Also in Baixa de Faro, another exhibition of three motorcycle brands, with test-drive, is also planned from Thursday to Saturday.

As for the parade, José Amaro said that they are waiting for the “consent of the responsible entities”, referring that the format will be the similar as in previous events, “but without stops or gatherings of people”. The event will take place as usual on Sunday morning in Vale das Almas towards Faro, “when we get to the city, everyone follows his route”, he stressed. The Moto Clube official said that there are many motorcyclists who came to the Algarve, in the certainty that they will come to visit the city, in other ways that Covid forced.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 14th July – 15th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

Another earthquake with a magnitude 3.5 on the Richter scale and epicenter about 23 kilometers east / southeast of Cabo da Praia, hit Terceira island yesterday, this event was recorded in the morning by the Azores Seismovolcanic Surveillance and Information Center (CIVISA).

Meanwhile, the Regional Health Authority has reported that the 1,132 tests were carried out in the region in the past 24 hours but fortunately, didn’t reveal any new ‘positive’ cases of “COVID-19”.

So far, the region has had a total of 157 cases of infection since the outbreak began on March the 15th and currently there are 7 ‘active’ cases.  1 of them is on the island of Flores, the other 6 are on the island of São Miguel.

Madeira Wednesday 15th of July

Covid-19 update

There was a new Covid-19 case yesterday. The number of cases remains 99, with 93 recoveries and 6 active cases. All active cases came from outside the Madeira archipelago and were discovered as a result of checks at Funchal Airport. Three active cases are from Madeira residents and three are from non-residents. One patient remains in the Covid-19 unit at Dr. Nélio Mendonça hospital.

There are 4,281 people under active monitoring and 3,897 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of Monday, there had been 1,556 suspected cases, of which 1,457 were not confirmed.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal and Porto Santo airports, 6,143 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 18h00). Overall, 31,047 samples have been processed in the Autonomous Region of Madeira.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 32 calls from Monday to Tuesday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,589. The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,639 calls, with 154 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/14/nao-ha-novos-casos-positivos-de-covid-19-mantem-se-seis-casos-activos-na-regiao/

Checks on compliance with Covid-19 guidelines

Yesterday, several teams from ARAE (Autoridade Regional das Atividades Económicas – Regional Economic Activity Authority) carried out an inspection in Funchal to check if Covid-19 guidelines such as social distancing, the use of face masks, maximum capacity limits and distancing between tables were being complied with. They checked if business owners, employees and customers were complying with the guidelines. Several establishments, including supermarkets, were inspected.

 

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/14/arae-fiscaliza-lotacao-distanciamento-e-uso-de-mascaras-nos-estabelecimentos-comerciais/

40 Madeira companies signed up to certification

More than 40 Madeira companies have already adhered to the SGS Portugal certification on good practices in managing biological risks. According to SGS Portugal, there was high interest in this certificate from a wide range of Madeira companies such as hotels, restaurants, travel agencies, tourist entertainment, car rental and others that aimed to prove their compliance with good practices and to increase tourist trust.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98648/40_empresas_da_Madeira_ja_aderiram_a_certificacao_de_boas_praticas_na_gestao_de_riscos_biologicos_

MadeiraShopping complies with the highest hygiene standards

MadeiraShoping has adopted hygiene and cleaning procedures through a partnership with SGS, a world leader in inspection, monitoring, testing and certification. This partnership aims to the ensure the safety and well-being of all customers, visitors, staff and suppliers.

MadeiraShopping received a hygiene monitoring certification and an evaluation of SGS disinfection, after a thorough inspection. It confirmed the rigorous implementation of protocols and guidelines and reinforced Sonae Sierra’s commitment on safety and prevention.

MadeiraShopping enhanced its current protocols on hygiene in the management and mitigation of risks related to Covid-19, thus providing added safety for all customers, visitors, staff and suppliers. Some of the measures that have been implemented include cleaning more frequently, more training and specialised training for cleaning staff, social distancing and correct hygienisation and disinfection.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98561/MadeiraShopping_assegura_cumprimento_dos_mais_elevados_padroes_de_higiene_com_certificacao_SGS

Fátima Lopes making masks for Savoy Palace

Fátima Lopes, a famous clothing designer, is making face masks for exclusive use by all Savoy Palace staff. She already designs the entire team uniform for its staff. The mask complies with all the DGS (Directorate-General of Health) guidelines, has a simple but elegant design, is made from materials approved but CITEV and has its design exclusively registered on INPI. Fátima Lopes explained that since it is a piece of equipment that has to be used for several consecutive hours and its elastic component hurts and leaves sore marks on the skin, this new mask does not contain any elastic materials.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/14/arae-fiscaliza-lotacao-distanciamento-e-uso-de-mascaras-nos-estabelecimentos-comerciais/

Power cut

Empresa de Electricidade da Madeira (Madeira power supplier) announced there will be power cuts in the following days, due to planned work on the electricity supply network. The following areas will be affected:

TABUA

 15th July – 10h00 to 11h45

 Lugar da Serra & Lugar da Candelária (partial)

15th July – 12h00 to 12h30

Zimbreiros (next to ER 222)

FUNCHAL

17th July – 00h00 to 07h00

  •  Estrada Curral dos Romeiros (numbers 1 to 30)
  • Caminho Curral dos Romeiros (entrance number 7)
  • Caminho do Meio (numbers 1 to 191)
  • Caminho das Voltas (numbers 1 to 118)
  • Rua Clube Choupana (number 28) & Rua do Miranda (numbers 4 to 7)
  • Vereda Ribeiro Domingos Dias (numbers 3 to 47)
  • Escadas Ribeiro Domingos Dias (numbers 1 to 27)

17th July – 09h00 to 12h00

  • Caminho das Voltas (number 47)
  • Vereda da Terra Chã (number 24)

17th July – 09h00 to 11h30 & 14h00 to 16h00

  • Caminho do Palheiro (numbers 153 to 190)
  • Rua das Murteiras (numbers 2 to 18)
  • 2º e 3º Becos das Murteiras
  • Travessa das Murteiras (number 3)

However, power could be restored during the time frame mentioned above. So, for safety purposes, it should be assumed that there will be power at any time during this period of time. If necessary, customers can contact the free Customer Support Service (Serviço de Apoio ao Cliente): 800 221 187.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/14/publicidade-o-fornecimento-de-energia-sera-interrompido-nos-dias-horas-e-locais-abaixo-indicados-anuncio-50-2020/

 

Situatio report Portugal Tuesday 14th July

Introduction

We start today with another sad note, the announcement yesterday by the GNR that Corporal Vanya  Martins  aged 31years had passed away as a result of the accident that happened on the AI  road on 7th July. She was in the car with her colleague who died a day after the accident.

It has therefore been a very tragic week with these two young GNR personnel plus the firefighter who lost his life fighting a fire at Lousã a few days ago. Last night five fire fighters were injured fighting a fire, two seriously near Castro Verde. We wish them a full recovery.

This once again reminds us that those who work in such professions put themselves at everyday to protect us. I know this, as having served in the police for over 30 years one of my sad duties was to attend the funeral of those police officers who died in the line of duty.

Once again our condolences go to the families and friends of those who have died in what has been a very sad week.

Returning to Covid-19, yesterday the Prime minister once again referred to the Odiáxere party”, which he said he hoped “will not be repeated anywhere in the Algarve, which had resulted in an anomalous number of new cases that do not correspond to the pattern of the region”. He added that he hoped that people have learned their lesson, because the whole Algarve and the whole country are paying a very high price for that party. Therefore, games like these cannot continue”.

We could not agree more and a point we have emphasized several times over the last few weeks as we have also mentioned to government officials.

Despite this, however, the PSP in Bragança had to disperse an illegal party with around 80 people attending in a bar over the weekend and the GNR took similar action at a private party with 30 people attending. We advise people to remember the 20 limit ceiling. Obviously some people are either unaware, or are determined to break the law with all the consequences that can result from these selfish actions.

Rightly in my opinion the Government yesterday criticized the “lack of coherence” of some countries of the European Union (EU) in the restrictions on the entry of citizens from Portugal. This was amplified by Belgium including the Algarve and Alentego as amber on their traffic light system (see report below). At the same time the Dutch authorities removed Porto from its’s red light list.

Lastly please be reminded that temperatures are set to rise this week and that DGS has given a warning concerning this, which we will post on our Facebook page.

With that please have a Safe but hot Day

Headlines

WHO warns: “too many countries are going in the wrong direction” in combating covid-19

The World Health Organization (WHO) warned, this Monday, that “too many countries are going in the wrong direction” when it comes to combating the covid-19 pandemic.

At a press conference from WHO headquarters in Geneva, Director-General Tedros Ghebreyesus said that “the actions of many people and governments” and “contradictory messages” from heads of state and other leaders are “undermining” “efforts to control the expansion of the new coronavirus.

The official warned that “there will not be a return to the old normality in the near future but there is a roadmap to control [covid-19] and continue with life”, stressing that without control and suppression measures adopted at the government level and in collaboration with populations, the pandemic “will only get worse and worse and worse”.

Tedros Ghebreyesus pointed to the American continent as “the epicenter” of the pandemic, with “more than 50% of cases” from around the world.

Governments must “communicate clearly with citizens” and design “comprehensive strategies to suppress transmission”, prompting “populations to follow basic public health principles: physical distance, wearing masks, breathing etiquette”.

“Each government, leader or person can do its part”, he defended, recognizing that many government officials are “working in difficult circumstances” and have to balance “health, social and cultural challenges”.

Situation of Calamity in 19 parishes to continue

Government set to maintains State of Calamity for 19 parishes for two more Weeks

The Government is set to maintain alert situations for most of the mainland, “contingency” for the Metropolitan Area of Lisbon and “calamity” for 19 parishes, for another 15 days, according to the Minister of the Presidency yesterday.

According to Mariana Vieira da Silva, who was speaking at a press conference in Lisbon, the recommendation was taken after a meeting with the presidents of the municipalities of Lisbon, Sintra, Loures, Amadora and Odivelas (all in the district of Lisbon), in which the 19 most affected parishes.

“In all of these five council areas, in the last seven days, a decreasing trend of new cases can be seen. This is a trend that needs to be consolidated and we are not in a position to rest, it needs strong monitoring,” she said.

With the maintenance of these situations, in force since July 1, associated restrictions remain in force, such as the obligation to close most commercial establishments at 8:00 pm, the prohibition on the sale of alcohol at service stations and the limitation of gatherings up to 10 people in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area.

DGS Covid-19 Situation Report

The Directorate-General for Health (DGS) announced on Monday that there were a total of 1,662 deaths and 46,818 cases of Covid-19 in Portugal since the beginning of the pandemic.

There are 2 more fatalities and 306 new cases of infection in the last 24 hours. The number of hospitalized patients rose to 467, 5 more than on Sunday. There are 63 people in intensive care, 1 less than the day before.

Lisbon and the Tagus Valley is the region most affected, in cumulative terms, by the pandemic, with 22,865 cases (which represents 48.84% of infections). They are followed by Norte (18,142), Centro (4,276), Algarve (708), Alentejo (576), Azores (152) and Madeira (99).

The age group most affected by the disease is

  • 40 to 49 years old (7,712), followed by
  • 30 to 39 years old (7,587),
  • 50 to 59 years old (7,198),
  • 20 to 29 years old (7,040),
  • 80 years old to above (5,602),
  • from 60 to 69 years old (4,759),
  • from 70 to 79 years old (3,305),
  • from 10 to 19 years old (2,043)
  • and up to nine years old (1,524).

There are also 48 infected people of unknown ages. Overall, there are 26,080 women in Portugal and 20,738 men infected. In total, 831 women and 831 men died with Covid-19.

Health

Covid-19. Outbreak at Carregado factory with 42 confirmed cases

There are 42 confirmed cases in a new outbreak in Covid-19 in the parish of Carregado, district of Lisbon, the Director-General of Health, Graça Freitas, reported yesterday.

The patients are workers at a ceramic factory in Carregado. According to the Director-General of Health, at this time the results of 170 people are awaited.

The intervention that is usually done by health and local authorities is being carried out. We are trying to contain the outbreak at its origin, looking for the contacts of these people who may be spread over several regions of Greater Lisbon or even others ”, explains Graça Freitas.

Reguengos de Monsaraz outbreak update

The number of active cases of covid-19 from the outbreak detected in a nursing home in Reguengos de Monsaraz, in the district of Évora, dropped to 127 on Sunday, two less than in yesterday, the municipality announced today. According to the city council, in the statement with the latest update of the county’s epidemiological bulletin, the most recent two cases that recovered from the disease caused by the new SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus are from people in the community.

As of Sunday, according to the municipality’s data, 19 people have already recovered from the disease, namely 14 in the community and five employees of the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation (FMIVPS), where the outbreak appeared on June 18.

The active cases of covid-19 in the municipality of Reguengos de Monsaraz are now 127 (there were 129 on Sunday), of which 86 are registered at the institution, namely 20 employees and 66 users, in addition to 41 in the community. Regarding the spread in the community, the municipality indicated that “there were no cases in the last five days”.

Government Improves Data Collection on Disease to “Reduce Errors”

The tools used to analyze and treat data related to those infected with covid-19 are being targeted for “deep intervention” to reduce the “possibility of errors”, said the Secretary of State today. The official stressed the importance of “transparency and rigor” in the collection and dissemination of data on the new coronavirus.

Also present at the press conference, Luís Góis Pinheiro, president of the Shared Services of the Ministry of Health (SPMS), added that the objective is to reduce the manual intervention of “complex operations that are becoming increasingly automated”. In this way, it speeds up the collection and dissemination of data and “the error is reduced”, reinforced Luís Góis Pinheiro, guaranteeing that this improvement work “will be finished very soon”.

In addition to the data that allow the DGS bulletin to be prepared on a daily basis, which contains information on the increase of infected and deaths related to covid, such as the age or the city where they were identified, SPMS are also improving TraceCovid19.

TraceCovid19 makes it possible to manage the pandemic and provide support to doctors who keep patients under surveillance. According to Luís Góis Pinheiro, the improvement of this tool will “make it possible to process information more and more” and “support the decisions of those who have to make it”.

Eight out of ten Infected Health workers have recovered

Eight out of ten health professionals infected with covid-19 have recovered, according to a figures made available yesterday by the Secretary of State for Health, which points to a total of 3,280 infected people who have already recovered.

According to accounts of the Ministry of Health, 3,280 health professionals “infected with coronavirus have already recovered, that is, more than 81%”, underlined the Secretary of State for Health, António Lacerda Sales, during the regular press conference to assess the epidemiological situation of covid-19 in Portugal.

The Secretary of State for Health underlined the reinforcement of human resources in the National Health Service (SNS) since the first cases in Portugal emerged in early March: Health units now have “more than 3,900 health professionals”.

SNS already being strengthened for the winter

The Secretary of State for Health said today that the preparation of the plan for the winter is already underway, with the reinforcement of human resources, the installed capacity of hospitals, vaccination and the testing network.

“Regarding the preparation of the plan for the winter, these human resources are already being hired and will certainly continue to be hired according to the needs”, said António Lacerda Sales.

During the usual press conference on the covid-19 pandemic in Portugal, the Secretary of State said that until last week, the National Health Service had been reinforced with 3,894 professionals, including doctors, nurses, technical and operational assistants, provided that the first cases appeared in Portugal in early March.

In addition to strengthening human resources, preparing the plan for the winter also involves investing in the installed capacity of hospitals and groups of health centers, in particular intensive care units.

“We aim, by the end of the year, at 9.3 beds per 100 thousand inhabitants, which will require between 930 and 1,000 intensive care beds,” he said.

Pandemic Restrictions

Authorities disperse gatherings over the weekend In Bragança

Bragança authorities dispersed at least two gatherings over the weekend with dozens of people who broke the rules imposed by the covid-19 health crisis, security forces said today.

The GNR District Command of Bragança stated in a statement that it inspected and closed, on Saturday, a private party with about 30 people and also on Saturday, at dawn, the PSP evacuated a bar in the city of Bragança where they met more than 80 people.

Both situations gave rise to administrative offenses with a fine, ranging from 100 to 500 euros if the promoter of the event is singular and from 1,000 to 5,000 euros if he is a legal person. The fine remains at the minimum amount if it is paid voluntarily at the time of the infraction, otherwise the process goes to the general secretary of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, which sets the amounts.

In the case of GNR, the military detected the private party while policing and, “after being approached, the people present at the event followed the instructions and ended the party, leaving the place”.

The Guard’s military raised an administrative offense notice to the landowner, who voluntarily paid the fine.

Travel

Government Criticizes “Lack of Coherence” in EU Due to Restrictions on Portugal

The Government today criticized the “lack of coherence” of some countries of the European Union (EU) in the restrictions on the entry of citizens from Portugal, due to the covid-19, saying it hopes that free movement be replenished “in the coming weeks”.

“It seems to us that there is a lack of coherence in the restrictive measures that some Member States are taking,” declared Foreign Minister Augusto Santos Silva, speaking to journalists in Brussels after the meeting with his EU counterparts.

Speaking after the first four-month face-to-face meeting of EU foreign ministers, given the pandemic, Augusto Santos Silva noted that he also brought this issue to the meeting, noting, in a discussion on disinformation, “that the best way to combat confusion is with clarity”.

Government demands that Belgium remove Alentejo and Algarve from dangerous areas

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Augusto Santos Silva, demanded this Monday that Belgium remove Alentejo and Algarve from the list of areas considered risky, subjecting travellers from these regions to “greater vigilance”, and admitted “surprise” with the inclusion.

“For me, it was a surprise that, this morning, […] I heard about the notice published on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belgium that not only identified the parishes in the Lisbon area, but also the regions of the Alentejo and the Algarve “, said the head of Portuguese diplomacy, speaking to journalists in Brussels after the meeting with their European Union (EU) counterparts.

To my great surprise, I confess, since I do not know any data that can associate these two regions with the levels that, unfortunately, we know in such 19 parishes in Greater Lisbon” , he added, in statements made after the first face-to-face meeting in four months of the EU foreign ministers, given the pandemic.

Augusto Santos Silva indicated that, “barely noticed” this situation, he contacted the Portuguese ambassador in Brussels, the Belgian ambassador in Lisbon and spoke with his Belgian counterpart, none of whom was aware of the inclusion.

“The Belgian minister promised me that they would identify and react. I don’t know if at this hour it is identified and corrected, but I hope so,” said the Minister for Foreign Affairs, considering that this inclusion of Alentejo and Algarve “does not gives credibility “to Belgian restrictions due to covid-19 for not being based on scientific criteria.

Other health news

DGS warns of dangers of rising temperatures

During this week, “very high temperatures are expected with tropical nights”

Graça Freitas, director-general of Health, warned today, July 13, of the dangers of the heat that will be felt this week , with a special warning for children, the elderly, pregnant women and the chronically ill, as they represent more vulnerable groups.

Graça Freitas took advantage of the press conference aimed at assessing the epidemiological situation of Covid-19 in Portugal to warn of another health risk: the excessive heat expected in the next few days, which could translate into “greater morbidity and possibly greater mortality”.

During this week, “very high temperatures are expected with tropical nights, that is, nights when the temperature will not drop below 20º”, stressed the Director-General of Health, recalling that there are four large groups that end up more vulnerable: children, the elderly, pregnant women and the chronically ill.

For this reason, the head of DGS recalled some “basic measures” such as drinking water or natural fruit juices without sugar, stressing that it is necessary to drink even if there is no feeling of thirst or to wear loose, fresh clothes, a hat and sunglasses. .

Meals should be cold and light and should be several times a day and people should stay for two or three hours in cool environments, because “the body has mechanisms for thermal regulation but needs help”, he warned. Avoiding too much physical effort and not being in the sun during the hottest hours were other recommendations left today by DGS, which again recalled the numbers people should call if they feel bad: 112 or 808 24 24 24, of the SNS24.

Other News

Rural fire in Lagoa da Mo- Castro Verde

Five firefighters were injured this Monday, in the late afternoon, following a fire that mobilizes more than a hundred operatives in the Castro Verde region, in the Alentejo. In combat, there are three aerial means.

Source of the Beja District Emergency Operations Command revealed that the “large” fire warning was given at 17.07 hours. The fire started in Lagoa da Mó, next to Entradas, crossed the IP2 and progressed eastwards, having already passed the Vale Gonçalinho Environmental Education Center (CEAVG).

The EN2 was cut off to traffic between Castro Verde and the town of Carregueiro, specified a source for the GNR, but has since reopened. The IP2, the R2 road, which connects Entradas and Carregueiro, and the EN123, between Castro Verde and Mértola, continue to be closed.

According to the Mayor of Castro Verde, António José Brito, five firefighters were injured in fighting the flames. One of the firefighters suffered minor injuries and is already in the Castro Verde barracks. The other two wounded, from the Cuban corporation, have a poor prognosis and will be transported to hospitals in Lisbon. One of them has 95% of the body burned.

The fire was dominated 02.22 hrs. We are now going to make the aftermath and stay on watch, because it is a very large area,” said Vítor Silva.

The INEM helicopter based in Évora was activated to assist the firefighters, who were flown to a hospital in Lisbon. A fire tanker vehicle used by the Castro Verde firefighters overturned in fire-fighting operations, but the accident resulted in no injuries.

ANEPC Website malfunction

Safe Communities Portugal have reported and many people will have seen for a week there has been a problem with the part of the ANEPC Website which provides information of incidents as well as rural fires.

Generally this provides the time the incident/fire was registered, its point of ignition on a map, district, municipality and parish, the updated number of resources that have been deployed and its status e.g. active, in resolution etc. When the fire becomes a major incident it shows more information such as reinforcements, command post location, significant road closures and a more detailed breakdown of resources.

It is the above that cannot now be seen as a result of the failure. Safe Communities Portugal raised this with the ANEPC at the time it occurred and have since remained in liaison concerning this at the highest level. We have been assured that this does NOT affect operational data provided to command posts and operational commanders.

During this period luckily there have been no major incidents, but not having this vital public information tool available at the time of the critical fire period, and for such a protracted, is to say the least disconcerting.

Should there be a significant or an officially classified major incident during this period, there will as usual be official briefings to the media by the relevant District CDOS and other officials, which is in fact usually more comprehensive in content than the dashboard. We will report these as usual together with information from our own CDOS contacts should this happen. The latest we have of the website is that is it a technical failure and all steps are being taken to restore it and prevent further problems. We will maintain liaison with them.

Please note that Fogos.pt obtains its information from this dashboard. Therefore its system now only shows the start of a fire but no other information and not its status which is important. As such we are not reporting these.

Portugal- Cyber Security incidents double in first 6 months of year

The number of incidents recorded by the National Cybersecurity Center (CNCS) increased 101% in the first half, in year-on-year terms, to 689, according to the Cybersecurity Observatory bulletin released today.

“The increase coincides with the time of confinement due to the covid-19 pandemic”, and, “compared to the same period of 2019, the first half of 2020 registers a 101% increase in the number of incidents”, reads in the document.

In March, 138 incidents had been registered (a year-on-year increase of 176%), in April the number reached 150, which dropped to 138 incidents in May. Last month, 106 incidents were recorded.

In the second quarter, 160 incidents of ‘phishing’ were recorded [computer attack aimed at ‘phishing’ sensitive data from a user], being the most frequent type of incident, followed by the system infected with ‘malware’ (68 incidents) and non-access authorized (41 incidents).

More than a third (37%) of the ‘phishing’ incidents recorded by CERT.PT in the second quarter of this year “affected the banking sector”.

Algarve Tuesday 14th of  July

Tourism

Covid-19: Marcelo defends positive discrimination for the tourism sector

The President of the Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, yesterday talked about “positive discrimination” for the tourism sector, considering that the Algarve is one of the regions where this discrimination is very important.

“Tourism in general, catering, hotels, sectors linked to tourism, deserve positive discrimination and the Algarve is one of the areas where this is very important,” Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa told reporters before a dinner with mayors in Lagos, Faro district, Algarve.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa met at a working dinner with the mayors of the Algarve to analyse the economic situation motivated by the pandemic of the covid-19, one of the biggest tourist destinations in the country. The head of state indicated that, according to information obtained from the Government, this “is considering seriously looking at the tourism situation in terms of employment in the future, in addition to what has already been announced, and is very attentive to the situation in the Algarve”.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa said he hoped that on the 20th, when Ireland released its list of countries at risk, “it could translate into news different from that which could be feared by British influence or proximity”.

Covid-19: Costa hopes that Odiáxere party “will not be repeated anywhere else in the Algarve”

The Prime Minister, António Costa, said yesterday that he is convinced that the countries of the European Union are “finally” realizing that the great increase in the number of cases in Portugal is very localized, assuming that it has also sensitized their European counterparts.

“I have been [sensitized] and I think that finally it started to be perceived in some countries what is the great disparity of the situation in Portugal. We now have a country where the situation is practically very low and then we have 19 parishes, in more than 3,000, where there is a very significant number of new cases”, he said, during a trip to The Hague, during which he also addressed the issue with his Dutch counterpart, Mark Rutte, as part of efforts to get that message across, which he said he believed was getting through.

António Costa pointed out that “Belgium, for example, yesterday [Sunday] realized this and has already made a very clear distinction between Lisbon and the rest of the country; the Netherlands, which had put Porto together with Lisbon, has already removed Porto”, and revealed that today it had a telephone conversation with its Irish counterpart, with the same concern to explain the situation of the numbers of the covid-19 and the necessary differentiation.

“I also tried to make him aware of this differentiation and that, in particular, areas that are traditional tourist destinations for the Irish, such as the Algarve and Madeira, are in a clearly distinct situation from these 19 parishes”, he said.

According to António Costa, “this message is important, because people see the global numbers by country and then they are often unaware of the situation”.

On today’s decision by the Belgian authorities to place Alentejo and Algarve under orange alert, António Costa devalued the issue, considering that “a mere recommendation to go to the doctor” is not “a great disincentive” for people to travel to these regions, and noted that Belgium even “took care to describe in the box that published the name of the 19 parishes that are under red alert.

On the other hand, the Portuguese Prime Minister noted that, in the reference weeks taken into account, “the Algarve and the Alentejo were hyper-inflated by two absolutely atypical phenomena: the Odiáxere party”, which he said he hoped “will not be repeated anywhere in the Algarve, and the situation in the Reguengos de Monsaraz home”, two situations that resulted in an anomalous number of new cases that do not correspond to the pattern of the regions”.

António Costa underlined the “individual responsibility of each one”, and that “nobody can alienate”, stressing that “nobody can ignore that every time there is a distraction, this has a price, and a very high price”, of health, but “also of economic health of an entire region”, as was the case in Odiáxere, where a party was held that caused a great outbreak.

“May it not be repeated and that people have learned their lesson, because the whole Algarve and the whole country are paying a very high price for that party. Therefore, games like these cannot continue, and I think that everyone has also noticed, and I hope they have another type of behavior”, he concluded.

Couple arrested for carob theft on private property

The GNR Faro Territorial Command, through the Territorial Post of Tavira, yesterday arrested a man and a woman, aged 19 and 17, respectively, in flagrante delicto, for the crime of theft of carob in Tavira.

As GNR advances in a statement, the arrest resulted from a complaint that a couple was stealing carob from a property. The military of the Guard went to the place, “where the suspects intercepted” when they were in the collection of the referred fruit. The suspects were in possession of 180 kilograms of carob, with an approximate value of 144 euros.

The National Republican Guard also confirms that, the detainees were constituted defendants and the facts forwarded to the Faro Judicial Court. It should be added that the same police force, on Saturday, arrested a 28-year-old man and a 27-year-old woman for the carob theft, this time in Vilamoura.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 13th July – 14th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

On Monday, five districts of mainland Portugal, the Azorean islands of Faial & Terceira as well as Madeira had ‘extreme risk of exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation’, according to the Portuguese Institute of the Sea and the Atmosphere (IPMA).  For regions with ‘extreme risk’, IPMA recommends that everyone avoids ‘exposure’ to the sun as much as possible.

The districts of Viana do Castelo, Braga, Porto, Vila Real, Bragança, Aveiro, Viseu, Coimbra, Castelo, Branco, Leiria, Lisbon, Setúbal and Faro on the mainland plus the islands of Flores and São Miguel in the Azores & the island of Porto Santo, off Madeira, had a ‘very high’ risk.  For regions with a ‘very high’ risk, IPMA advises that people use sunglasses (ideally with a UV filter), hats,’t-shirts’, parasols and sunscreens.  Also, children should avoid ‘exposure’ to the sun.

Meanwhile, the Regional Health Authority has reported that the 567 tests were carried out in the region in the past 24 hours but fortunately, didn’t reveal any new ‘positive’ cases of “COVID-19”. So far, the region has had a total of 157 cases of infection since the outbreak began on March the 15th and currently there are 7 ‘active’ cases.  1 of them is on the island of Flores, the other 6 are on the island of São Miguel.

 

Madeira Tuesday 14th of July

Covid-19 update

There was a new Covid-19 case yesterday. The number of cases is 99, with 93 recoveries and 6 active cases. Three patients are Madeira residents and three are non-residents. One patient remains at Dr. Nélio Mendonça hospital. All current active cases were discovered as a result of checks at Funchal Airport.

There are 4,128 people under active monitoring and 3,756 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of yesterday, there had been 1,556 suspected cases, of which 1,457 were not confirmed.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal Airport, 5,758 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 18h00). Overall, 30,334 samples have been processed in the Autonomous Region of Madeira. The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 33 calls from Sunday to Monday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,551.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,629 calls, with 154 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/13/madeira-com-mais-um-caso-de-covid-19-ha-agora-seis-casos-activos/

Binter to increase Madeira-Canary Islands flights in August

Binter announced it will have three weekly flights between Funchal and Gran Canaria and a weekly flight between Funchal and Tenerife. This new flight schedule will start in August. The aim is to connect the two regions, after an improvement in their sanitary context and to actively contribute to the recovery of tourism in both territories.

The flight from Funchal to Gran Canaria will take place on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. It will depart from Funchal at 12h00 and arrive in Gran Canaria at 13h30. The return flight will be at 14h25 and arrive in Funchal at 15h55.

The flight to Tenerife will take place on Saturdays, with the flight departing Funchal at 12h00 and arriving at Tenerife Norte – Cidade de La Laguna at 13h20. The return flight will depart at 14h25 and arrive in Funchal at 15h45. Flights can be booked online (www.binter.pt), by phone (291 290 129 or through travel agencies.

All passengers flying from Madeira must comply with the Spanish Government strategy on early detection, surveillance and control of Covid-19, which means there are sanitary checks on Spain’s entry points.

All passengers flying from outside Spain must fill an electronic public health questionnaire that must be presented when arriving in the airport at the destination. The form can be filled online (https://www.spth.gob.es) or through a free app called “SPAIN TRAVEL HEALTH-SpTH”. After filling in the questionnaire, the traveller will receive a QR Code that must be presented when arriving in Spain.

All passengers arriving in Spain, by air or sea, must face a sanitary check before entering the country, These checks could include body temperature measuring to detect fever (a temperature of 37,5ºC or above), documentation checks and a visual check on the health situation of the passenger.

Binter said it had implemented protocols and procedures to ensure the safety of passengers and airline staff, with a rigorous compliance with all European and Spanish guidelines such as, the mandatory use of face masks, covering the nose and mouth, while travelling.

To increase safety onboard its aircraft, Binter has adopted the following measures: phased boarding and disembarking, the distribution of disinfecting wipes to all customers, the elimination of onboard service to reduce touching of surfaces, enhanced cleaning procedures in addition to cleaning between stopovers and disinfection at the end of each daily operations, and  new deep disinfection procedures to ensure a comprehensive hygienisation of the entire fleet.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/11/binter-vai-aumentar-voos-entre-a-madeira-e-canarias-a-partir-de-agosto/

Water supply disruption in Santana

Scheduled work on the water supply chain, to prevent water leaks, will be carried out tomorrow, from 14h00 until 18h00, in the Parish of Santana. The following areas will be affected: Achada da Cruz, Achada Gramacho, Barreiro, Caminho Chão, Faias, Fonte Grande, Igreja, Pico, Pico Tanoeiro, Queimadas e Fontes, Serra de Água e Serrado.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98575/Interrupcao_do_abastecimento_de_agua_em_Santana_no_dia_15_de_julho

Roadworks at Via Rápida (VR1)

The exit road to VR1 at junction 9 (nó 9 – Pilar– marked in red on the map), heading from Funchal towards Ribeira Brava, will be closed to traffic due to scheduled overnight paving work, from July 15th to July 16th, between 21h00 and 07h00 (following day).

As a diversion, Vialitoral suggests drivers leave VR1 at junction 10 (Santo António – previous junction) or junction 8 (São Martinho – following junction). All similar information is available and constantly updated on the following website: www.vialitoral.com

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98599/No_do_Pilar_na_via_rapida_encerrado_ao_transito_de_quarta_para_quinta-feira

 

Portugal Situation Report Monday 13th July

Introduction

Good morning – More traffic lights are being activated in Europe with Hungary announcing it will introduce this scheme starting Tuesday. In Europe, in the red group are affects Albania, Bosnia, North Macedonia, Kosovo, Belarus, Montenegro and Ukraine.

Hungarian residents from these destinations will be allowed to return to the country, but must undergo a mandatory screening test for the new coronavirus and a mandatory two-week quarantine, Gulyas said.

 

The classification system also includes orange and green areas. Travellers from the orange category must confine themselves if they do not obtain a negative coronavirus screening test within five days of arrival. This category includes Portugal.

There is little doubt that a number of countries are increasing measures (for instance the UK finally considering the importance of facemasks – although not yet put in place in commercial establishments), given the vastly increasing daily global increases in confirmed cases, mainly from outside of Europe over the last few days. For this reason I would suggest that you read the excellent daily overseas situation report produced by Louise Birch because this summarizes the situation very well. As we said previously Portugal is not immune from global trends, but so far has done more than many countries, in withstanding the level of impacts many countries have experienced.

From reports, there are also some indications that although borders between countries have been opened since the beginning of July, many people are hesitant over air travel at this time preferring to remain in their own countries rather than take a break overseas. We wait and see the emerging trends as we approach the August holiday period.

Yesterday the Ministry of internal Administration (MAI) announced an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the tragic death of a fire fighter at the fire in Lousa on Friday. This was the first fire fighter to die on duty this year. Such an investigation is normal in such deaths in addition to the usual operational review that takes place after all fires of this size.

Of course there will be much speculation on social media and in the press but I would caution coming to conclusions until the official findings are announced. All we know is that on that day “atmospheric instability” had been forecast by the ANEPC/IPMA in a bulletin which we had translated and shared and that dry thunderstorms were likely. Such conditions exacerbate the behaviour of fires. The MAI has said that the cause of the fire was through a lightning strike.

Finally please note that today 15 municipalities in the districts of Faro, Portalegre, Santarém, Castelo Branco, Guarda and Bragança today have a maximum fire risk, according to the Portuguese Institute of the Sea and the Atmosphere (IPMA).

At maximum risk are the municipalities of Torre de Moncorvo (Bragança), Figueira de Castelo Rodrigo, Trancoso (Guarda), Proença-a-Nova, Vila Velha de Ródão, Vila de Rei (Castelo Branco), Nisa, Marvão, Gavião (Portalegre ), Mação, Abrantes, Sardoal (Santarém), Tavira, Castro Marim and Alcoutim (Faro). Take care in the rural areas and if you see smoke call 112 immediately – do not assume someone else has done so.

 

Have a Safe Day.

DGS Covid-19 Situation

On Sunday, Portugal recorded six more deaths and 291 new cases of covid-19 since Saturday, 78% of which were in Lisbon and Vale do Tejo. In total, there are 1660 deaths and 291 new confirmed cases bring the total 46,512 confirmed cases to date.

There are 252 more recovered.

Five of the deaths were registered in Lisbon and Vale do Tejo (total of 540) and one in the North (822). The victims are two women and four men. Reguengos de Monsaraz, where there was an outbreak recently, recorded the third consecutive day with no fatalities. Of the new contagions, 226 were registered in Lisbon and Vale do Tejo bringing the total to 22,611 infected, which is equivalent to about 77% of the total.

The North now has 41 more cases, with a total of 18,109 infected. The Center has 12 more (4255), the Alentejo two more (572) and the Algarve another nine (704). Madeira has two more cases (out of a total of 97) and the Azores, which registered 153 yesterday, but now shows 152 to be confirmed. There is no data updated by municipalities for a week.

Health

Reguengos de Monsaraz Outbreak Update

Reguengos de Monsaraz, in Évora district, registered on Saturday the third consecutive day without fatalities resulting from the outbreak of covid-19 detected in a home in the municipality, on 18 June, informed the City Council today.

This is the longest period of time without deaths to be recorded since the outbreak at the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation’s home (FMIVPS) made the first of its 16 fatalities ever recorded, on 24 June.

Even so, the number of active cases of covid-19 in Reguengos de Monsaraz dropped to 129 (there were 130 on Saturday), which is due to another case cured in the community and the passage of the fourth day without the detection of any new cases community infection.

The only case of infection detected in the Alentejo city in the last four days was that of a household employee who was under active surveillance at her home, since June 22, after performing four negative tests between the 18th and 28th of the same month, and which ended up testing positive to the fifth test, held on July 9th.

Thus, among the cases still active, there are 20 professionals from the FMIVPS home (one death and five cured), 66 users of the institution (14 deaths) and 43 people from the community (one death, 12 cured). The numbers reflect a total of about 2,050 tests with known results by the end of Saturday.

Ordem dos Médicos designates commission of inquiry to investigate outbreak in the home of Reguengos de Monsaraz

The Order of Doctors has suggested the families of the elderly people in the Reguengos de Monsaraz care home in Évora to consider the possibility of bringing an urgent legal action to defend sick people, following the outbreak of covid-19 in the institution.

In a statement issued this Sunday, the body reports that legitimizes the suspicion that the measures adopted to contain the spread of the virus are not the most correct and therefore admits the pertinence of a lawsuit “leading to subpoena” for “defense of the rights, freedoms and guarantees of sick people ”in that home.

The Order of Doctors has informed users’ relatives that the relatives could take legal action, if the competent entities do not recognize the pressing need to respect the guidelines and rules of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS) and thus determine the transfer of users to a Covid Dedicated Area in order to be properly screened and placed in a ward with conditions appropriate to their state of health, if necessary”, says the note.

Considering that “the case deserves to be reported to the Public Prosecutor’s Office”, given its “exceptional severity”, the Ordem dos Médicos also decided to designate a commission of inquiry to “assess all clinical circumstances related to this situation”.

Reguengos de Monsaraz – Regional Health Administration Alentejo

The Regional Health Administration of Alentejo assured today, in a statement, that it is doing “what is possible” to guarantee the care considered necessary in the protection of patients infected with covid-19 in a nursing home in Reguengos de Monsaraz (Évora).

The Regional Health Administration has done and will continue, within the legal framework, to do everything possible to guarantee the care considered necessary, in the space that was allocated to the users of the Residential Structure for the Elderly (ERPI), of the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation, who need surveillance, but who do not have criteria for hospitalization”, reads the statement of ARS Alentejo sent to the agency Lusa.

In the document, ARS underlines that it will “always be attentive” to the care needs identified in the region, taking the measures that are dependent on it, to “always guaranteeing” the rights of the population it serves.

Hospital of Espírito Santo de Évora (HESE),

According to the update of the epidemiological bulletin released today by the local Civil Protection Authority, there is, however, another hospitalization at the Hospital of Espírito Santo de Évora (HESE), where 11 people are hospitalized. Among the hospitalizations at HESE are 10 users of the FMIVPS home, five of whom are in intensive care, where the only case of community infection requiring hospital care is also found.

Beaches

Heat takes thousands to the beach. There are 17 beaches with a red light.

Most of the beaches of Almada, Sintra, Cascais and Oeiras were near or had reached capacity this Sunday.

The heat that is being felt in Portugal, set to continue this week, resulted in many people visiting the beaches over the weekend. Only in the area of Lisbon and Almada there are dozens of beaches reaching full capacity and dozens more with high capacity. Only five of the 48 beaches were at low capacity. There are also 17 with red lights (11 on the Cascais line, five in the Costa de Caparica area and one in Oeira) and 26 with yellow lights.

On Sunday afternoon (12th July), according to the infopraia application , of the 24 beaches in the municipality of Almada spread over 13 km of sand, five of them had exhausted the planned capacity (Cabana do Pescador, Fonte da Telha Centro, S. João da Caparica , Rainha and Riviera), 14 of which had a yellow sign (close to maximum occupancy)..

The scenario in the Cascais bathing area is almost 100% red.

The four beaches in the municipality of Oeiras were also in high demand by Lisbon residents. Of the four beaches, one had red light (Caxias) and the other three yellow (Paço de Arcos, Santo Amaro and Torre).

Lifeguards

The Portuguese Federation of Lifeguards-Lifeguards (FEPONS) stated yesterday that it took a “positive” view of the first month of the bathing season, which has had a sufficient number of beach watchers, despite lack of “incentives” and “new equipment”. The bathing season started on different dates in the country, with the first beaches opening at the beginning of June.

“So far we have no record of a lack of lifeguards,” FEPONS president Alexandre Tadeia told Lusa news agency, who had been warning since April that there might be a shortage of professionals to ensure surveillance in the summer.

According to the official, there could be a shortage of 1,500 to 2,000 lifeguards, but this scenario was not verified due to the closure of swimming pools in the interior of the country, following the covid-19 pandemic.

“The non-opening of the pools in the interior made many lifeguards who were unemployed go to work for the sea beaches”, he pointed out. In fact, he explained, “people who worked in these pools with other professions, such as swimming teachers, but who also had a lifeguard course” also went to the beaches.

In addition, Alexandre Tadeia considered that the financial crisis caused by covid-19 may have led to more people looking for this job, changing the trend that “only 50% of lifeguards return to work in the next bathing season”, according to one federation study.

Travel

Covid-19: Hungary forbids residents of several countries from entering the country

Hungary will ban access on Tuesday to residents of African countries, most Asian countries and some European states, among measures that also affect Portugal, the Government announced yesterday, invoking the global worsening of the pandemic.

From Tuesday at midnight, Budapest will introduce a tricolor system and the inhabitants of countries classified as “red zone” will not be allowed to enter the country of central Europe, until further notice. “We must preserve our security so that the virus is not introduced. Infection rates among us are low and we want them to stay that way,”Gergely Gulyas, Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s chief of staff in the capital, told reporters.

African and Asian countries, with the exception of China and Japan, are affected by this new measure. In Europe, it affects Albania, Bosnia, North Macedonia, Kosovo, Belarus, Montenegro and Ukraine.

Hungarian residents from these destinations will be allowed to return to the country, but must undergo a mandatory screening test for the new coronavirus and a mandatory two-week quarantine, Gulyas said. The classification system also includes orange and green areas. Travellers from the orange category must confine themselves if they do not obtain a negative coronavirus screening test within five days of arrival.

This category includes Bulgaria, Portugal, Sweden, Romania, United Kingdom, Norway, Serbia, Russia, United States, China and Japan.

Travellers to Andalusia, Spain

Andalusia will decree the mandatory use of a mask. The Spanish region thus follows the example of two other autonomous communities, Catalonia and the Balearic Islands, which have already imposed the mandatory use of facial protection either in closed or open spaces and even if there is social distance. The decision was announced this Saturday by the President of the Council, Juan Manuel Moreno and comes into force next week. Ceuta could be next. The president, Juan Jesús Vivas, guaranteed that he will propose the measure in the name of prevention.

According to the Andalusian leader, the decision intends to respond to what he called “tourismism”, after several municipalities reported concern about the fact that tourists do not wear a mask. “In some Andalusian municipalities there is a phobia of tourism, as tourists arrive, who do not wear masks and this causes some fear among their inhabitants, which is not a good thing , ” said Moreno, recalling that the measure is also intended face a “general and progressive relaxation” among the population “after five very difficult months”.

Andalusia is one of the communities with the lowest incidence of covid-19. The main leaders of the Andalusian government emphasized the “exemplary behaviour” of the 8.5 million Andalusians in the fight against the pandemic, but now there are 17 active outbreaks, in the region being the territory with the largest number of new outbreaks after the confinement.

The fact that the region is a highly sought after tourist destination requires authorities “to be cautious and take extreme measures” to prevent outbreaks from worsening in the region, as has happened in other communities: “We must avoid being hit by the virus and we must move forward.”

The proposal will be analyzed by the technical committee that monitors the coronavirus in Andalusia and, if it receives the approval, it will come into force “in the next day or 48 hours”. It remains to be seen whether the measure applies to any activity on public roads or only in commercial spaces

Doubts and insecurities among some Portuguese living in Germany returning home this summer

The doubts and uncertainty about the evolution of the covid-19 pandemic have already led many Portuguese people who live in Germany to cancel their trips, by car or plane, to visit their family in Portugal this summer.

The decision is not an easy one, assumes José Loureiro, one of the advisers of the Portuguese Communities elected by the Stuttgart circle. His mother, who is 87 years old, and his sister, who is almost 60, are waiting for him, like every year, in Portugal, but fear and uncertainty can condition the trip.

“I have this month to decide, with my family, whether we are going or not. I am mainly concerned because of the airports”, assuming that the doubts are transversal to the Portuguese with whom he has contact.

“Some are still undecided; others have already cancelled or postponed the trips. There are many uncertainties at the moment, many doubts, and people do not want to take the risk because they are subject to the possibility that, on their return from Portugal, they will be forced to be quarantined. This is a fundamental point because these two weeks will not be paid by employers afterwards”, said José Loureiro.

Likewise it is reported that the pandemic and the possible risks of returning to the European country, but not from the European Union, are worrying many Portuguese emigrants in Switzerland who prefer not to go on holiday to Portugal.

Other News

Prime Minister António Costa meeting today in The Hague with his Dutch counterpart

Prime Minister António Costa is meeting today in The Hague with his Dutch counterpart, Mark Rutte, in the framework of the bilateral meetings he has held with other European leaders before the European Council on Friday and Saturday in Brussels.

Mark Rutte

After hosting the heads of Government of Spain, Pedro Sánchez, and Italy, Giuseppe Conte, in Lisbon last week, to prepare the summit of 17 and 18 July at which the 27 will try to reach a compromise on the economic and social recovery in the EU in the face of the covid-19 crisis, Costa is now travelling to the Netherlands, one of the ‘frugal’ countries, with more divergent positions compared to the Portuguese.

However, despite the differences in position between Portugal and the Netherlands in the European Union, António Costa has a good personal relationship with Mark Rutte, having already been received in The Hague at the beginning of his term as Prime Minister in 2016. In turn, the head of the Dutch Government has also made an official visit to Portugal.

After the meeting in The Hague, which will take place during a working dinner at the official residence of the Dutch head of government, António Costa will continue his round of contacts with European counterparts, travelling to Budapest, where he will be received on Tuesday by the Prime Minister Hungarian, Viktor Orbán.

Rector of Fatima asks for prayer for those who risk their lives for everyone in the fires

The rector of the Fátima Sanctuary, Carlos Cabecinhas, today underlined the action of the firefighters and asked for permanent prayer for those who risk their lives for the good of all, reminding all of the fireman who died on Saturday, in a Lousã fire.

“At this time of the year I invite you to bear in mind in our prayers all the firefighters and all those who, with sacrifice and danger, risk their own lives for the good of all”, exhorted Father Carlos Cabecinhas, in the homily of this morning’s mass in the sanctuary grounds.

The rector of the Sanctuary also asked for prayers “for the fireman who lost his life fighting the fire in Serra da Lousã, for his family and for all who were injured”.

The firefighter, head of the Miranda do Corvo Volunteer Firefighters corporation, José Augusto Fernandes, 55, died this Saturday while fighting a fire in Trevim, in the Serra da Lousã. The Mayor of Miranda do Corvo, Miguel Baptista, decreed three days of municipal mourning (to be performed Sunday, Monday and Tuesday) in “memory and recognition” of José Augusto Fernandes, who was an employee of the Municipality of this village, in Coimbra district.

In the same fire, three other firefighters were injured – two from the Lousã municipal corporation and the other from Miranda do Corvo volunteers – who were discharged this morning after being sent, on Saturday, to the University of Coimbra Hospitals, the second commander of the Miranda do Corvo Fire Department, Rui Bingre, told Lusa.

 

Region Reports

 

Madeira Monday 13th of July

Covid-19 update

There was a new Covid-19 case yesterday. The patient is in isolation at home. The number of cases is 98, with 93 recoveries and 5 active cases. A patient is at the Hospital Dr. Nélio Mendonça. All current active cases were discovered as a result of checks at Funchal Airport.

There are 3,638 people under active monitoring and 3,740 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of yesterday, there had been 1,555 suspected cases, of which 1,457 were not confirmed.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal Airport, 5,157 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 17h30). Overall, 29,637 samples have been processed in the Autonomous Region of Madeira. The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 22 calls from Saturday to Sunday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,518.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,628 calls, with 154 people being monitored.

https://covidmadeira.pt/situacao-epidemiologica-na-ram-atualizacao-12-07-2020/

Power cut

Empresa de Electricidade da Madeira (Madeira power supplier) announced there will be power cuts in the following days, due to planned work on the electricity supply network. The following areas will be affected:

FUNCHAL

15th July – 09h00 to 11h30 & 14h00 to 16h00

  • Caminho da Casa Velha (numbers 88 to 107)
  • Vereda da Bela Vista (number 2)
  • Travessa do Pomar (numbers 1 to 54 and entrances 30 to 48)

16th July – 09h00 to 12h00

  • Caminho da Fajã Escura (numbers 13 to 36)
  • Vereda da Fajã Escura (numbers 2 to 11)

16th July – 09h00 to 12h00

 Caminho da Hortelã (numbers 11 to 56)

16th & 17th July – 09h00 to 11h30 & 14h00 to 16h00

  • Rua dos Álamos (number 3 and 5); Rua da Orquídea (numbers 1 to 20); Rua Dr. Gastão de Deus Figueira (numbers 4 to 22); Rua Dr. Fernando Rebelo (numbers 30 and 32)
  • Vereda do Cascalho (numbers 3 to 9)
  • Impasses 1 and 2 Rua Dr. Gastão de Deus Figueira
  • Beco do Cascalho
  • Bairro Santo Amaro (numbers 1 to 4)

However, power could be restored during the time frame mentioned above. So, for safety purposes, it should be assumed that there will be power at any time during this period of time. If necessary, customers can contact the free Customer Support Service (Serviço de Apoio ao Cliente): 800 221 187.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/11/publicidade-o-fornecimento-de-energia-sera-interrompido-nos-dias-horas-e-locais-abaixo-indicados-anuncio-49-2020/

 

Algarve

Covid.19: Truck of Hope travels Algarve until August 14

The Truck of Hope is back on the road and runs between the 9th of July and the 14th of August, the main streets and beaches of six municipalities in the Algarve: Portimão, Albufeira, Olhão, Tavira, Lagos and Lagoa.

The objective of this mission is to contribute to the covid-19 information and diagnosis process in the region, at a time of greater demand by tourists from all over the world during the summer holidays. The Camião da Esperança team advises on good public health practices, conducts tests and has a free nursing station available to the entire population.

After the first mission, which covered 21 municipalities and carried out more than 2500 tests, the Truck of Hope is back, for a mission totally dedicated to the Algarve region. With a focus on informing and testing, the mission aims to help contain the spread of the new coronavirus and collaborate with the Algarve Tourism Region, and municipal executives involved in the international projection and recovery of the Algarve’s image of excellence as a clean and safe.

The Camião da Esperança program includes the following locations and dates: Portimão – 9 to 13 July; Albufeira – 15th to 20th of July; Olhão – 22 to 26 July; Tavira – July 28 to August 1; Lagos – 3 to 7 August; Lagoa – 9 to 14 August. Services are available between 9 am and 2 pm.

Other news Algarve

Authorities identify alleged author of false alarm about child thrown overboard in Portimão

Maritime authorities have identified the alleged author of an anonymous report that said a child had been thrown overboard in Portimão, the case being referred to the Public Prosecutor’s Office, a navy source said today.

Speaking to Lusa agency, Portimão Port commander, Rodrigo Gonzalez dos Paços, specified that the maritime authorities were able to identify a woman, resident in Portimão, as the alleged author of “an electronic document sent last Thursday and that reported that a three-month-old child had been thrown overboard at Praia da Rocha”.

“The e-mail contained ‘three-month-old child thrown overboard at Praia da Rocha, please look for the child’,” explained the official.

According to Rodrigo Gonzalez dos Paços, shortly after the communication was received, “search procedures were launched at sea and on land, and after several hours it was verified that this was a false alarm”. The operations, which took place during Thursday afternoon, involved several personnel and means of the Maritime Police, the Ferragudo Life-Saving Station, Civil Protection, the Republican National Guard and the voluntary firefighters of Portimão.

GNR detains four individuals caught in the act of stealing items from a car in Boliqueime

Four men, aged between 29 and 48, were arrested by the GNR last Friday caught in the act of theft from vehicles in Boliqueime.When investigations were taking place in the context of an investigation into theft of a vehicle, the military of the Guard “detected the four individuals stealing tools that were inside, having intercepted and detained the four suspects”, the GNR stated.

A search was made at the residence of one of the suspects, and several car wheels and tyres were seized; nine cannabis plants; an induction hob; a 6.35mm calibre pistol; various civil construction tools (drills, screwdrivers and angle grinders) and a vehicle used in the practice of the crime.

The suspects were present yesterday at the Faro Judicial Court, with one of them being held in preventive detention in prison in Olhão. For the remaining three, bail conditions consist of biweekly presentations to the GNR. The action had the reinforcement of the Territorial Detachment of Albufeira and the Detachment of Intervention of Faro.

PSP intercept young people who consumed alcohol on the street in Faro

At dawn on Saturday in Faro, the police intercepted a group of young people who consumed alcohol on the street. Two foreigners were eventually arrested.

The PSP stated that the agents had been injured after, they approached the group. The nine young men say there was no conversation or warning.

The police have been on foot patrol to control the gatherings, social distance and opening hours. The law says that after 11 pm, establishments cannot receive more customers, even if they continue to serve those who are already there. Businessmen and tourists are still adapting, while the authorities are tightening up with compliance with the rules.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 12th July – 13th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

An earthquake with a magnitude of 3.0 on the “Richter” scale was recorded last Saturday on Terceira island, it was felt in the parish of Santa Cruz, Praia da Vitória.  The earthquake happened at 19:41 hrs, local time (20:41, Lisbon) with its ‘epicenter’ about 13 kilometres east/northeast of Lajes, said the Regional Service of Civil Protection and Firefighters of the Azores.  This is the fourth earthquake, felt by the population of Terceira Island this month; the last one in the same area, registered a magnitude of 2.4 on the 2nd of July.  The other two, felt on July 8 (with magnitudes of 2.1 and 2.6), had their ‘epicenters’ in the west of the island.

Meanwhile, the Regional Health Authority has reported that the 989 tests carried out in the region in the past 24 hours, didn’t reveal any new ‘positive’ cases of “COVID-19”.

So far, the region has had a total of 157 cases of “Covid-19” infection since the outbreak began on March the 15th and currently there are 7 ‘active’ cases.  1 of them is on the island of Flores, the other 6  are on the island of São Miguel.

 

Sunday 12th of July

Introduction

Good morning. Unfortunately we start with some more sad news with the report at a fire fighter died yesterday in tackling a fire in Lousã. We send our condolences to the family and friends of the fire fighter who died.

In the same operation, two Firefighters from the Municipal Fire Department of Lousã were assisted due to smoke inhalation and another Fireman from the Fire Department of Miranda do Corvo suffered injuries to the lower limbs (burns).

Needless to say that fire-fighting is a very dangerous profession. There are those who have to tackle fire fronts in searing heat, others like the GNR GIPS who fly in helicopters and are often the first responders at the scene and INEM and others involved in treatment of casualties on the ground and with the GNR ground forces, carryout evacuations where needed. All this when they are trying to protect themselves and others from Covid-19.

As far as Covid-19 is concerned there were few new announcements yesterday, except the addition of a further 200 confirmed cases which had not been previously included in the daily figures. This was due to a laboratory who failed to report tests for a period of three days earlier this month. Mistakes can happen, but I will say that DGS has been transparent in this regard, acknowledging this over a week ago and working to get the figures corrected.

Talking of figures it has been around a week since the ANEPC website encountered problems, which have resulted in no live information being provided on rural fires and other incidents. We have discussed with various officials in Lisbon concerning this and they are working to repair the problem. This is important as it provides vital information to the public.

As predicted by us yesterday the way the coloured light travel advice and quarantine measures for those travelling from Portugal to Belgium is still causing confusion and how it will be enforced. Passengers about to embark from Lisbon Airport to Brussels yesterday spoke to Lusa news, where they were provided with a contact tracking form by the airline that required anyone who signed them to “consent to be quarantined within 14 days of their arrival in Belgium”.

However, contrary to the rules currently defined by Belgium, the document made no distinction between passengers who had or had not been in the 19 parishes in the Lisbon region, identified by the Portuguese authorities, the criterion now applied. Belgian cabin crew admitted that they had not received “any instruction from the Belgian authorities” on this adding that passengers would have to wait and see on arrival. Please see our news item

As President Safe Communities Portugal, I was invited to an event involving the National Federation of Youth Associations (FNAJ). This took place Praia de Faro (near the Clube Náutico), in which the Secretary of State for the Fisheries, who is also the regional coordinator for Covid-19 in the Algarve Dr. José Apolinário and other guests participated. This included various presentations and handing out of free facemasks and other protective equipment by the FNAJ.

Given the bad press recently on the way that some young people had misbehaved in respect of illegal gatherings, under Covid-19 restrictions it was very refreshing to see a very different side, a matter I discussed with Catarina the FNAJ area leader who gave a presentation at the event. Well done.

It was also an occasion to brief Dr. José Apolinário on the work of Safe Communities Portugal and we discussed the importance of safety in the Algarve and initiatives as regards to Albufeira

Today is our Happy Sunday so let us all have a Safe Happy and relaxing day.

 

DGS Covid-19 Situation

The Directorate-General for Health (DGS) announced on Saturday the existence of a total of 1,654 deaths and 46,221 cases of Covid 19 in Portugal since the beginning of the pandemic.

There are 8 more fatalities and 542 additional cases of infection This includes 342 since Friday plus an upward adjustment of 200 that had not previously been reported due to laboratory not passing on test results over a 3 day period last week. (See following report on this).

The number of hospitalized patients dropped to 459, 12 less than on Friday. In intensive care there are 68 people. Portugal now records 46,221 confirmed cases of infection with Covid-19

This increase is attributed to the Region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, which recorded this Saturday another 259 cases compared to the previous day. All the deaths in the last 24 hours occurred in the region of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, while the number of cases in this region increased to 22,385, 2.1% more than on Friday. The new cases in the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo region represent 75.7% of the total new cases in the entire country.

DGS updated 11 bulletins and added 200 more cases to the national total

In addition to the daily publication of the country’s epidemiological situation (which this Saturday confirms 342 more cases of covid-19 and eight deaths), the Directorate-General for Health corrected the bulletins between June 30 and July 10 and increased two hundred cases in the Lisbon and Tagus Valley region.

A private laboratory partner spent three days without reporting any results of covid-19 tests to the Directorate-General for Health (DGS) at the end of June and there were cases that were yet to be confirmed. The health authority had already warned that it was reviewing the data and that it was going to replace 11 bulletins for the days between 30 June and 10 July. The result is the additional sum of over 200 cases to the national total. In other words, in addition to the 342 infected in the last 24 hours, DGS notified another 200 people with covid-19 for the past 11 days.

This update also had an impact at the level of the table representing the age group of those infected, which had been temporarily suspended. According to the most recent information, 44.2% of cases of infection with the new coronavirus refer to males and 55.8% to females. People between 40 and 49 are most affected by the pandemic (7624 infected), then between 30 and 39 years old (7478), followed by those between 50 and 59 years old (7126).

There is also a lack of regularization of data per municipality, frozen at the same time and which should be updated on the 14th, informed the Minister of Health, this Friday, in a press conference. “DGS is carrying out the verification of all data with local and regional health authorities, which will be completed during the next few days”, reads for now in the daily report of DGS.

Despite this situation, health authorities have asked the Portuguese to trust the data released. Graça Freitas, the director-general of Health, guarantees that Portugal has been guided by transparency and that, it has received international praise for the way it reports daily, without interruptions, the evolution of its epidemiological situation

Health

Reguengos de Monsaraz Outbreak Update

A worker from the care home where the Reguengos de Monsaraz outbreak of covid-19 originated on Friday received a positive test after four negative results between 18 and 28 June, according to the municipality.

The professional from the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation (FMIVPS) had been under active surveillance at her residence since June 22 and is the only new positive case to be recorded in the update of the epidemiological bulletin released today by the Civil Protection Authority of Reguengos de Monsaraz , Évora district.

Despite the new positive test, the number of active cases of the outbreak decreased to 130 (there were 131 on Friday), as the number of recovered cases increased by two from this outbreak taking the total to 16.

It was also the third consecutive day with no record of new cases of infection in the community and the second with no record of any fatal victims in an outbreak that has already caused the death of 16 people (14 users, a household worker and a person from the community).

At the Hospital do Espírito Santo in Évora, nine home users remain hospitalized, five of whom are in intensive care. In the same unit there is the only case of community infection to inspire hospital care.

Test on 22 People from Espaço Mais in Mogaduro were negative

The tests of covid-19 carried out on 22 people from Espaço Mais, in Mogadouro, came back negative, after on Thursday we heard of a positive case in that support structure for social inclusion said the mayor.

On Thursday, the facility frequented by a dozen children with reduced mobility, was closed as a precaution, after a user from the municipality of Miranda do Douro tested positive for the new coronavirus. Yesterday, the president of the Chamber of Mogadouro, Francisco Guimarães, said that the tests on the 22 people, including users, auxiliary technicians and drivers, were negative and that the facility has already been completely disinfected.

The mayor, who is also responsible for the Civil Protection district of Bragança, said that he will continue to monitor the evolution of the situation in his municipality, where there is no case of covid-19, and in the Planalto Mirandês. This inclusive space is the responsibility of the municipality of Mogadouro and operates in an old primary school.

Sport

Covid-19. DGS orders removal of goalkeepers at halftime of Belenenses

Goalkeeper André Moreira was forced to leave Belenenses SAD’s substitute bench at the break at the direction of the General Directorate of Health. According to the Liga statement, Moreira had been allowed to play in the game against Moreirense, after having tested Covid-19 negative three times (8, 9 and 10 July).

However, “by decision of the National Health Authority, Dr. Graça Freitas, confirmed the criterion of close contact and isolation of 14 days, had not yet been fulfilled.” André Moreira had already missed the match against FC Porto last week because he was close to a positive case in the Belenenses SAD squad. The League reaffirms that “it will always comply with the guidelines issued by the health authorities”.

Education

Teachers say tutelage Guidelines are inadequate

The Association of Licensed Teachers today requested urgent business meetings with the Ministry of Education, on the opening of the school year, as it considers that the tutelage guidelines are insufficient to safeguard the risk of covid-19 transmission.

Teachers want the opening of a negotiation process to deal with the working conditions necessary for the regimes planned for the next school year, whether face-to-face, mixed or non-face-to-face, according to a statement released today by that structure.

In the document, the association indicates that the written request went to the guardianship today. The Association of Licensed Teachers (ASPL) states that it sees with “great concern” the arrival of the next school year and the working conditions of teachers and students.

According to the ASPL, the guardianship guidelines do not explain the minimum distance that the students must be within the classrooms or the unfolding of classes.

“We can only conclude, because we know the reality of our schools well, that the rule of physical distance of 1.5 meters, at least, will not be complied with in schools, which ASPL sees with great apprehension”, reads in the document. The union organization also points out “other gaps”, stating that the need for a gel alcohol dispenser at the entrance and exit of each classroom, or at least in each corridor that gives access to the rooms, is not taken into account.

“It is also not guaranteed the supply of equipment such as masks, even if it is, at least, in situations where students, auxiliary staff or teachers do not have them when they access the school or are in school and need to change it, for whatever reason”, stresses the ASPL.

Leisure

Resumption of Bullfighting allowed with reduced capacity

The bullfighting season resumes with 50% capacity, which was published by the General Inspection of Cultural Activities (IGAC) an update to the rules discussed with the Directorate-General of Health (DGS).

“What makes us happy today is that finally – because it took a month and a half – there is an equal treatment in the resumption of cultural shows,” said Hélder Milheiro, secretary-general of ProToiro – Portuguese Federation of Bullfighting.

Belgium travel advice presents difficulties for airlines and aircrew

Passengers yesterday spoke to Lusa news about to embark for Brussels at Lisbon airport, where they were provided with a contact tracking form that required anyone who signed them to “consent to be quarantined within 14 days of their arrival in Belgium”. However, contrary to the rules currently defined by Belgium, the document made no distinction between passengers who had or had not been in the 19 parishes in the Lisbon region, identified by the Portuguese authorities, the criterion now applied.

Questioned by passengers, Lisbon airport officials did not know how to provide additional information about the document they distributed, sending clarifications to the Belgian crew, Lusa said at the scene.

On boarding, and also questioned by the few who risked flying from Lisbon to Brussels in the midst of so much uncertainty – the plane was going with a third of its capacity -, the Belgian cabin crew admitted that they had not received “any instruction from the Belgian authorities”.

“We will have to wait and see what kind of follow-up they will do when we land at Brussels airport,” said one of the staff to the passengers, not hiding his disorientation at the various questions being asked.

Upon arrival in Brussels, a person in charge of the Belgian health organization went to the plane door to collect the forms, which, after all, should only be filled out by those who were in one of the 19 parishes most affected by the outbreak, as meanwhile clarified by the crew. It remains unclear how the cases will be monitored and followed up.

Beaches

Praia da Parede in Cascais opens again after lifting the ban

Praia da Parede, in Cascais, has been reopened to bathers, after counter-analysis to the water that revealed microbiological values ​​”within the benchmarks”, thus allowing the lifting of the ban , informed the City Council today.

“The counter-analysis carried out on the water at Praia da Parede reveal that the microbiological values ​​are within the reference parameters. This means that the referred beach is in perfect conditions for bathing, so the ban is lifted”, he says, in a statement, the Municipality of Cascais, in the district of Lisbon.

The municipality underlines that “it worked in constant articulation with the competent authorities in this matter, namely the Portuguese Environment Agency, the Captaincy and the Directorate-General for Health, in order to ensure the safety and health conditions essential to bathing practice”, as well as towards the “rapid resolution of the anomalous situation”.

Praia da Parede was closed to bathing in the middle of this week after having recorded microbiological values ​​above the reference parameters, following periodic analysis carried out on the water quality.

In a note posted on Facebook, the municipality then referred that this situation determined the banning of bathing practice only at Praia da Parede, not affecting the others. According to the municipality, Águas de Cascais was conducting checks on networks and sanitation systems, in order to ascertain the possible causes of the results obtained, since the cause of the contamination of the water was not evident. The Cascais City Council also indicated that the other beaches in the municipality were subject to monitoring and analysis, with the results within the reference parameters.

Religious activities

Auxiliary Bishop of Porto presides over international pilgrimage in Fátima

The auxiliary bishop of Porto, Vitorino Soares, presides over the International Anniversary Pilgrimage of July, which starts tonight and is the second of the year with the presence of pilgrims since the pandemic began of covid-19.

According to the Sanctuary of Fátima, the July pilgrimage program – which celebrates the third “apparition” of Our Lady in Cova da Iria – maintains the format of May and June. This pilgrimage “is based on the narrative told by Lúcia from the dialogue with Our Lady and, in it, there are four main moments”, she explains.

These moments are “the request of Our Lady to return, on the following 13th day, the insistence on the prayer of the rosary, for the easing of the war, the requests of Lucia for the healing of some close people and the promise of Our Lady to make a miracle, in October, for everyone to believe ”, he adds.

The pilgrimage begins at 9:30 pm today, with the prayer of the rosary, followed by the procession of candles and the celebration of the word, at the altar of the enclosure. On Monday, at 9:00 am, the rosary is said and then the international mass is held in the prayer hall, with the blessing of the sick. The pilgrimage ends with the goodbye procession.

Other news

Notification to the public – Rural fires

The National Authority for Emergency and Civil Protection warned of the risk of rural fires associated with atmospheric instability resulting in the occurrence of downpours and dry thunderstorms, most likely to occur in the interior regions of the North, Center and Alto Alentejo.

Photo:Diccon Scrivens

In a statement the ANEPC emphasizes that the weather forecasts until Sunday can “increase the favourable conditions for the eventual occurrence and spread of rural fires, especially in the regions of the South and from the Center and North interior “.

“It is expected from yesterday afternoon and tomorrow [Sunday] a worsening of atmospheric instability, presenting conditions of instability in all of mainland Portugal, with the exception of the Algarve, most likely in the northern and central interior regions and Alto Alentejo, with the possibility of showers and dry thunderstorms “, says the note, based on information provided by the IPMA.

Safe Communities Portugal has translated the full bulletin and preventive advice.

Fire fighter dies fighting fire in Serra da Lousã

A fire fighter died this Saturday in a fire in the Serra da Lousã and two were seriously injured, revealed the Mayor, Luís Antunes. Firefighters are said to have been surrounded by fire.

Initially, a source from the District Relief Operations Command (CDOS) in Coimbra had told JN that there was a missing firefighter. He was part of a group of five firefighters from the Miranda do Corvo Corporation that, this Saturday afternoon, was surrounded by the fire in the Serra da Lousã.

There was an indication that three of them had left unharmed and two had fled down the slope. According to the CDOS of Coimbra, one of the firefighters who fled has already been located, is injured and is being assisted on the scene by the medical vehicle of the INEM of Coimbra.

The Mayor of Lousã, Luís Antunes, speaking to RTP, confirmed the death of a firefighter during the fight against this fire, regretting the tragic outcome. He added that, in addition to the mortal victim, there were four injured, two seriously.

The fire in the Serra da Lousã, above the village of Candal, broke out at 18.26 hours and is being fought by 24 corporations in the district of Coimbra, with the help of firefighters from Leiria. There are 230 men at the scene with the help of 62 vehicles, with the fire being said to have dominated by 21.11 hours.

On behalf of the Government, I address condolences to the family, friends and to the Miranda do Corvo Volunteer Firefighters Humanitarian Association”, reads the note, released this Saturday night. The Minister of Internal Administration expresses “wishes for full recovery to the three firefighters who were injured during this complex operation in Serra da Lousã ” and highlights “the committed, generous and professional manner with which every day thousands of firefighters integrate this national effort of the defence of the forest against fires”

Madeira regional report Sunday 12th of July

Covid-19 update

There were 2 new Covid-19 cases yesterday. They belong to the group of 3 people had been listed as suspected cases on Friday. One of them was ruled out after laboratory analysis. The number of cases remains at 97, with 93 recoveries and 4 active cases. All current active cases were discovered as a result of checks at Funchal Airport. The patients live in Funchal, Machico, Santa Cruz and the other patient is not a Madeira resident. They are currently in isolation and have not required hospital treatment so far.

There are 3,380 people under active monitoring and 3,817 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of yesterday, there had been 1,554 suspected cases, of which 1,457 were not confirmed.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal Airport, 4,814 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 18h00). Overall, 28,989 samples have been processed in the Autonomous Region of Madeira. The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 34 calls from Friday to Saturday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,496.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,621 calls, with 154 people being monitored.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98463/Casos_ativos_residem_no_Funchal_Machico_e_Santa_Cruz

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/11/ram-regista-mais-dois-casos-de-covid-19-confirmaram-se-dois-casos-suspeitos/

 

Four Views Hotels to reopen

Four Views Hotels announced it will reopen its hotels in Madeira. The Four Views Oásis, next to Reis Magos Beach, in Caniço, will reopen on the 15th of July. The Four Views Monumental, in Lido, will reopen on the 1st of August. Four Views Baía, its most recent hotel, is scheduled to open in December and will have some new features at different levels.

The new program is called “Maximum Care, Minimal Impact” (Máximo Cuidado, Mínimo Impacto), is focused on the customer, and aims to protect guests and staff so they feel safe and cared for, through the implementation of several measures every day.

At the same time, the chain intends “to provide guests the experience of a quality stay, just as they are used to, in order to fully enjoy their holidays while minimising the impact of these measures”.

The hotel chain is certified by SGS on Covid-19 good practices; has ALS GLOBAL, a Health and Safety international company  as its partner; has partnered with DIVERSEY, an international company focusing on Cleaning Products and Solutions; and has partnered with ERGORAM, a local company that is market leader on Safety, Hygiene and Health in the Workplace.

Some new features for guests include the possibility of checking-in and checking-out online, thus avoiding queues and gathering at the hotel hall; the viewing of restaurants and bar menus on their mobile phone or tablet, which also provides the possibility of booking services such as Room Service or Spa Treatments.

It should be emphasised that, since the 4th of May, all Four Views hotels have been certified with the “Clean & Sale” seal, issued by Turismo de Portugal.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98264/Grupo_Four_Views_reabre_hoteis_na_Madeira_

 

Caniço school children warn about the danger of discarded face masks

The school and Parish challenged students, in May and June and as a celebration of the World Oceans Day, to find a way of warning the population not to discard disposable disposable PPE on the floor, particularly face masks, gloves and cleaning wipes. They also encouraged the population to use reusable face masks so as to generate less rubbish.

The Year 1 to Year 4 students (1º Ciclo) and their parents took part in this project and presented dozens of drawings on these topics. A team of juries from the two local institutions evaluated all the projects and the 5 highest scored projects were awarded gifts provided by the following sponsors: VMT-Madeira, Farmácia do Caniço, Whale Museum-Caniçal, CTM and Loja Flow.

The Caniço Parish (Junta de Freguesia) will produce copies of the winning drawings and will distribute them throughout the Parish public spaces in order to inform the population on the need for disposable face masks, gloves and cleaning wipes to be always discarded in general waste rubbish beans and never on the floor.

The website below shows the children’s drawings:

https://freguesias.dnoticias.pt/escola-primaria-e-junta-do-canico-alertam-para-o-perigo-das-mascaras-abandonadas-na-via-publica/

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98281/Alunos_do_Canico_alertam_para_o_perigo_das_mascaras_abandonadas_na_via_publica

 

Power cut

Empresa de Electricidade da Madeira (Madeira power supplier) announced there will be power cuts in the following days, due to planned work on the electricity supply network. The following areas will be affected:

FUNCHAL

13th July – 09h00 to 11h30 & 14h00 to 16h00

  • Caminho do Monte (numbers 6 to 54)
  • Rua João Carlos Gomes (number 29)
  • Rua da Quinta dos Reis (number 52)
  • Beco do Pão Duro (numbers 10C D, 10C E, 15 and 17)

14th & 15th July – 09h00 to 11h30 & 14h00 to 16h00

  • Rua dos Ferreiros (numbers 128 to 138)
  • Caminho da Levada dos Barreiros (numbers 13 to 32)

PORTO MONIZ

14th July – 09h00 to 10h00 & 15h00 to 15h30

  • Casa do Elias
  • Câmara de Carga
  • Campo de Futebol

FAJÃ DA OVELHA

14th July – 09h00 to 10h00 & 15h00 to 15h30

  • Fonte do Bispo

SÃO JORGE

14th July – 10h00 to 10h30 & 11h30 to 13h00

Rocha de Baixo

However, power could be restored during the time frame mentioned above. So, for safety purposes, it should be assumed that there will be power at any time during this period of time. If necessary, customers can contact the free Customer Support Service (Serviço de Apoio ao Cliente): 800 221 187.

 

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/11/publicidade-o-fornecimento-de-energia-sera-interrompido-nos-dias-horas-e-locais-abaixo-indicados-anuncio-49-2020/

 

Algarve Report

Covid 19 Situation

The epidemiological bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS) this Saturday, 11th of July, attributes 7 more cases of Covid-19 to the Algarve, bringing the total numbers of accumulated cases to 695.

Covid.19: Tests on employees and the elderly at Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Loulé are all negative

The local authority of Loulé confirmed this morning on Facebook, that after tests were carried out on 119 employees and 166 elderly people in the home of Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Loulé, all of them were negative.

The operation, which was carried out by ABC (Algarve Biomedical Center), tested 235 people.

It is recalled that last Thursday a positive case from Covid was confirmed.19, in an official from Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Loulé, leading the Municipality together with the Public Health Authority and the ABC, to carry out screening tests on all employees and elderly people in the home.

FNAJ Action Day in Faro

National “Action Day” of the campaign “Desconfinar Jovem – Sua causa” – Action promoted by the National Federation of Youth Associations (FNAJ), which has the support of the Presidency of the Portuguese Republic, of the National School of Public Health of Universidade Nova Lisbon and the District and Regional Youth Associations, took place throughout the country yesterday.

In the Algarve, this took place at Praia de Faro (near the Clube Náutico), in which the Hon. State Secretary, Dr. José Apolinário and other guests participate to accompany dinstitutional guests accompany a youth brigade of 10 members in the distribution of protective material (disposable masks), awareness material and personal gifts (beach pillow with the campaign slogan – “The risk is real. Be this summer’s hero!”

President Safe Communities Portugal David Thomas was invited to participate and spoke with the Secretary of State on the work of Safe Communities Portugal and a number of matters concerning Covid-19

Azores

Situation Report Azores 11th July 12th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

The Regional Health Authority reported has said this afternoon that the 1,114 tests carried out at the two reference laboratories in the Region in the past 24 hours did not reveal positive cases of COVID-19.

So, the Region maintains a total of 157 cases of infection by the new SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, which causes COVID-19 disease, with seven currently active positive cases, six of which on the island of São Miguel and one on the island of Flores.

 

 

Portugal Situation Report Saturday 11th July 2020

Introduction

Certainly a rather interesting day. This morning I would like to start, not on a subject concerning Covid-19, but another topic which I feel illustrates on how Portugal cares for its people.

We received calls yesterday from people from at least five countries asking Safe Communities advice on various matters. This is not particularly unusual especially at this time, with so many questions about international travel and Covid-19.

One of these, however, was serious and involved us having to contact 112 on a possible life or death emergency reported from overseas, but involving an incident in Portugal where immediate emergency police and medical assistance was required.

A most complicated and unusual situation. We contacted 112 and they were excellent even though the report was made in English, relayed through us from someone on the opposite side of the world. This resulted in conversations, with INEM, Bombeiros the 112 call centre manned by PSP and the person who reported this 8000 miles away. Thankfully it had a happy ending. I cannot emphasize enough the superb work that they all did, plus support given to the victim, in adverting what could have been a tragedy.

I mention this as it was coincidental to our post on Facebook yesterday regarding the use of 112, which of course resulted in the posting of individual cases where calls to 112 did not live up to expectations.. This will always happen, in any country. What is important is to learn lessons when there are shortfalls, identify and adopt best practices when things go well, but always remain positive and objective! Quick responses through the 112 system here have saved thousands of lives each year and we thank 112 operators and responders alike.

The matter of travel restrictions and traffic lights is continuing with Belgium issuing conflicting advice regarding Lisbon, or at the very least open to ambiguity and misunderstanding. It now appears to have been resolved however and the only red light areas subject to quarantine in when travelling to Belgium, however, is if you are from one on the 19 parishes in Lisbon which is still subject to a Situation of Calamity. How immigration officials will be able to determine if those return from a holiday in Portugal, have visited those parishes is beyond us.

On a broader note the Prime Minister criticised the way the European Union has acted in terms of managing its internal borders.

“There is an area where the European Union has failed because there is no uniform criterion regarding internal borders, which then generates extraordinary discrepancies and even cases of pure retaliation. There are countries that have recently been put on red lists, not because they have a large incidence of covid-19, but because they had put others on red lists,” he said.

Personally I could not agree more as the lack of uniformity has resulted in each country adopting different criteria with different restrictions, presenting a most complicated scenario for the tourism industry and travellers alike. A point we made a few days ago.

I would suggest you take time if you can to read this full situation report as it contains some important and useful information including an announcement that Coimbra passengers travelling to Madeira can be tested, free of charge, for Covid-19. This protocol is particularly aimed at the more than 500 university students from Madeira who are studying in Coimbra. This is hardly covered in the mainstream news.

Lastly you will see our Overseas report this morning, kindly prepared by Louise Birch. It shows that there are a number of countries where there are major setbacks, with South Africa recording its highest daily figure of over 13,000 cases in just one day. So when we look at Portugal and rightfully concern ourselves regarding the sutuation in some areas of Lisbon, we must not forget the global context. We should be aware of what is happening elsewhere and from mistakes or otherwise being made. Disneyland in Florida being opened with nearly 250,000 confirmed cases and the highest daily deaths of 120 people in Florida on Wednesday – unbelievable!  I urge you to read this excellent daily report – one of the most informative to be found anywhere.

With that please have a Safe Day

Headlines

The Prime Minister yesterday considered “manifestly unfair” that Portugal is on the “red list” of several countries because of covid-19 and criticized the way in which the management of internal borders is being carried out in European Union.

António Costa took this position at the end of a meeting with the Mayor of Loures, Bernardino Soares, on combating the covid-19 pandemic, in which he was accompanied by the Minister of Health, Marta Temido, and the Secretary of State for Affairs. Asked about the growing number of countries that place restrictions on the entry of people who were in Portugal, the prime minister replied: “I think it is clearly unfair”.

“Whoever sees these classifications, it seems that we are in a situation of very high generalized risk compared to others. If we analyse the numbers carefully, we can identify very well what kind of situation exists. But, above all, we have to integrate other numbers, which is why I highly recommend reading the reports of the European Disease Control Agency “, he defended.

According to António Costa, this agency “has always insisted on the need to use a variety of criteria to assess the degree of risk”.

He added, “There is an area where the European Union has failed because there is no uniform criterion regarding internal borders, which then generates extraordinary discrepancies and even cases of pure retaliation. There are countries that have recently been put on red lists, not because they have a large incidence of covid-19, but because they had been put others on red lists,” he said.

Then, António Costa left a warning to the European authorities: “If we all start to retaliate against each other, we will all be quickly on red lists”.

DGS Situation Report

The Directorate-General for Health (DGS) announced this Friday the existence of a total of 1,646 deaths and 45,679 cases of Covid-19 in Portugal since the beginning of the pandemic.

There are 2 more fatalities and 402 new cases of infection since Thursday. The number of inpatients has dropped to 471, down 16 from Thursday. 66 people are in intensive care down 7.

Of the total of 402 new cases, 342 are in the region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley. The two fatalities concern the Centro area: they are a man and a woman, both over 80 years old.

Within this health region, cases are mainly focused on the Lisbon Metropolitan Area. There are currently 27 outbreaks of the disease in the North, 10 in the Centro region, 107 in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, five in the Alentejo and 12 in the Algarve, for a total of 161.

The Rt, transmission rate for each case, is 1.12 in the North, 1.06 in the Center, 0.98 in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, 0.95 in the Alentejo and 0.81 in the Algarve. The Center has nine more cases of infection and the North 44 more. Another five infections were registered in the Algarve and two in the Azores.

Health

José Hospital outbreak update

The outbreak of covid-19 in the hospital of S. José, in Lisbon, has increased by one, with 13 now testing positive for the disease, according to a source at the Centro Hospitalar Universitário de Lisboa Central. A hospital cleaning officer also tested Covid-19 positively, joining the seven patients, four nurses and an operational assistant, who were already known.

The seven infected patients, who were transferred to Curry Cabral hospital, will repeat the test within eight days, the same source said. Following this outbreak, which began on Wednesday, 109 tests were performed on hospital professionals, pending the result of 15 results.

On Thursday, the chairman of the Board of Directors of the Centro Hospitalar Universitário de Lisboa Central, Rosa Valente de Matos, said in a press conference that all procedures at the hospital have been activated and that there is no reason for alarm.

“Hospital de São José has taken and will continue to take all safety measures so that patients can safely come to the hospital, to our emergency department and to our external consultations”, said Rosa Valente de Matos, in a speech in which she tried to “calm and reassure people”.

Reguengos de Monsaraz outbreak update

The Minister of Internal Administration, Eduardo Cabrita, said today he understands the concern of Spanish mayors who asked for the closure of borders with Portugal, but guaranteed that the outbreak of covid-19 in Reguengos de Monsaraz is “perfectly identified” and “located”.

“We understand the concern, the rules of distance and sanitary hygiene have been applied to in this municipality. We are particularly sorry for the fatalities. There is an outbreak that is located and has to do with the nursing home” said the minister. The mayor of Reguengos de Monsaraz, in Alentejo, José Calixto, said yesterday that “it does not make sense” to close the borders in the region to stop the spread of covid-19, as requested by two mayors from the Spanish province of Badajoz.

“Any situation of sanitary siege or more drastic confinement has to do with objective data resulting from the epidemiological investigation or uncontrolled transmission chains. If there is a time when it doesn’t make sense to talk about this measure, it’s now that there are no new cases in the community and all cases detected in the last 10 days were previously confined”, commented José Calixto.

Prime Minister speaks on the Lisbon Metropolitan area

The Prime Minister responded to questions today that the methodology to combat covid-19 is working in the areas of the Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon that are most affected by the pandemic, but considered it “premature” to lighten the measures of containment of the pandemic.

António Costa took this position at the end of an hour-and-a-half meeting with the Mayor of Loures, Bernardino Soares, on combating the covid-19 pandemic, in which he was accompanied by the Minister of Health, Marta Temido, and the Secretary of State for Parliamentary Affairs, Duarte Cordeiro, also Government coordinator for the Lisbon and Tagus Valley region.

“As I had already observed in Sintra and Amadora on Wednesday, the methodology [of combating covide-19] put in place is proving well, because the number of new cases [of infection] has been stabilized in Loures and there is a downward trend in active cases, which gives us confidence in the path followed “, maintained the leader of the executive.

However, according to António Costa, “there is still a need to follow this path, seeking to reinforce the teams in order to maintain proximity work”.

“The methodology of integrating multidisciplinary teams, working closely with families and populations, has been very positive”, he insisted, after praising the role of mayors in this “articulation” of efforts. Soon after, however, António Costa considered “premature to anticipate the classification status that was made earlier this month”, namely in relation to the 19 most affected parishes in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area.

“We will continue to work, but we are in a completely different phase than we were in March, when the challenge was to stop exponential growth. Then, we tried to reduce the pandemic to a situation of control. Now, this situation is under control throughout the national territory “, he advocated.

Economy

Marcelo Says Deficit Review “Shows a brutal crisis”

The President of the Republic said yesterday, in Coimbra, that the upward revision of the public deficit to 7% “reflects the brutal crisis” that the country has already begun to experience, in the face of the covid-19 pandemic. For the President of the Republic, the prolongation of the pandemic “implies health and social expenses”, with the increase in the deficit accompanying “external forecasts”.

“International forecasts tell us that what is thought to be economic and financial developments in the second half of this year is worse than previously thought”, stressed Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, recalling that Banco de Portugal came to make forecasts “below 6%”.

According to the head of state, when there is such a deep fall in GDP (Gross Domestic Product), motivated by the fall in economic activity, “this means that revenues decrease”, at the same time to meet the costs related to fighting the pandemic.

Marcelo Warns Pandemic has created new homeless People

The President of the Republic yesterday distributed meals to people in need in Coimbra, warning that, throughout the country, he has found new homeless people, many of them young people who were left homeless because of the crisis caused by the pandemic.

With the economic and social crisis that is taking place, the number of people who go there has increased and the President of the Republic, speaking to journalists, made a point of identifying the indirect victims of this pandemic. According to the head of state, the big difference is the increase in “very young people” to resort to this support, having found precarious workers as well as students.

“They were middle class and, suddenly, because of the crisis, they were thrown into a homeless situation with no roof or roof but no money,” he said.

Support being provided by ACERSI

ACERSI’s technical director, Ana Maria Cristóvão, explained to journalists that there has been an increase of 200 people who are being supported by the institution since the beginning of the pandemic, now providing support to a total of around 550 people, with more than 800 meals daily.

“Because of the care we provide, the people we follow and forward, I do not think that this crisis can be solved with the speed with which it was installed,” he said, saying that some of those who resort to ACERSI lost their jobs, others took it back and others resumed it but ended up losing it.

Ana Maria Cristóvão pointed out that the institution has several cases of people who, without a job and without a family support network, started to have many difficulties in “being able to pay for indispensable things”. “I don’t have much hope that everything will go well,” he admitted.

Tourism

President of the Republic defends the “Policy of Truth” even if it costs Tourism

The President of the Republic stressed yesterday that Portugal has carried out a large number of tests on the covid-19, defending this “truth policy”, even though it has costs in foreign tourism.

“We do not close our eyes to the truth. We could close our eyes to the truth, saying that it is no more testing, that it is not worth checking out more, that what appears as symptomatic appears and what does not appear we are not looking for. Our orientation should be opposite, even if it has costs in international terms “, said Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, who spoke to journalists in Coimbra.

The President of the Republic defended the thesis that Portugal, having opted for “massive tests” in certain sectors where symptomatic cases of covid-19 appeared, started to “know the reality of asymptomatic people, many of them young people, who had no signs of covid-19.

According to the head of state, these tests allowed “to reveal more clearly many positive, asymptomatic cases”, which will then have a bearing” on the decisions of other countries [regarding the measures imposed on circulation], looking only at the number of positive cases “.

The idea that the increase in cases in Greater Lisbon was due to the increase in tests had already been shared by the Prime Minister, António Costa, at the end of June, a thesis that was contested by epidemiologists heard by Expresso, who oppose the idea of that the number of tests explains the increase in the number of infected people detected.

“We have the policy of truth – I am not saying that others do not, but we have it in a radical way”, stressed Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa.

Pandemic measures

Prime Minister António Costa considers it premature to reduce Measures in most affected areas

The Prime Minister stated yesterday that the methodology to combat covid-19 is working in the areas of the Metropolitan Area of Lisbon that are most affected by the pandemic, but considered it “premature” to lighten the measures of containment of the pandemic. According to the Prime Minister, “there is still a need to follow this path, seeking to reinforce the teams in order to maintain proximity work”.

“The methodology of integrating multidisciplinary teams, working closely with families and populations, has been very positive”, he insisted, after praising the role of mayors in this “articulation” of efforts.

Education

Students can apply for Masters and Doctorates without having finished their Studies

Students can apply for masters or doctoral degrees without having completed the previous study cycle, according to a diploma approved today in parliament that will be in force during the covid-19 pandemic.

The parliament today approved a bill for the PCP, with favourable votes from all the benches except the PSD and CDS, which provides for a set of exceptional and temporary measures that try to protect the rights of higher education workers and students. As far as students are concerned, the diploma allows applications for a study cycle to obtain a master’s or doctoral degree to “exceptionally be carried out without completing the previous study cycle and during the period of time necessary to complete it”.

Temperature control airports

Since March 23, over 100 volunteer firefighters have assisted in carrying out the operation to measure the temperature of passengers at Faro and Porto airports, as part of measures to combat the pandemic of the disease COVID-19. In a statement, the Ministry of Internal Administration states that this task will, from next week, be carried out by ANA – Aeroportos de Portugal.

The Ministry of Eduardo Cabrita thanks the operatives who, under the coordination of the National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority, “contributed to this mission, with the dedication and professionalism that always characterize Portuguese firefighters”.

International travel

Belgium Travel advice “Blinking” traffic lights

Belgium yesterday banned the entry of travellers from specific parishes in the Lisbon district, giving the green light to the rest of the country, according to the latest information on the website of the Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Portugal moved to the ‘green’ category in the traffic light model, but the municipalities of Amadora and Odivelas, as well as the parishes of Queluz-Belas, Massamá-Monte Abraão, Agualva – Mira Sintra, Algueirão – Mem-Martins, Rio de Mouro and Cacém – São Marcos, in the municipality of Sintra, the parish of Santa Clara, in the municipality of Lisbon, and those of Camarate, Unhos, Apelação and Sacavém – Prior Velho, in the municipality of Loures, are classified as ‘red’, being entry into Belgium is prohibited to travelers from these countries.

Entries are conditioned (orange light at traffic lights) from Cyprus (mandatory test), Greenland and Faroe Islands, Denmark (mandatory test), United Kingdom (quarantine) and Iceland (test or quarantine).

Finland, Ireland, Marla and Norway are, together with the aforementioned parishes in the district of Lisbon and the Spanish towns of La Segria (Lleida, Catalonia) and La Marina (Lugo, Galicia), catalogued in the red light, making it impossible to travel not essential, such as tourist ones, for these destinations.

The list, subject to regular reviews, gives the green light (unrestricted travel) to Germany, Austria, France, Hungary, Italy, Luxembourg, Latvia, Croatia, Holland, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Sweden, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Estonia, Bulgaria , Czech Republic, Slovenia, Switzerland, Portugal and Spain (except areas classified as contained).

Other news

More than 17 thousand weapons destroyed in Maia

The Minister of Internal Administration, Eduardo Cabrita, was present in an action for the destruction of weapons by the PSP in Maia, district of Porto, within the scope of the International Day for the Destruction of Arms. Eduardo Cabrita stated that the number of weapons delivered by citizens or seized corresponds to “about four times more than what had been carried out in 2015 “.

“In recent years, we have seen a very significant growth in both voluntary deliveries and seizures”, he stressed. The weapons destroyed today have been declared as lost to the State in the course of criminal proceedings, administrative offenses or voluntary surrender.

In the action 17,183 weapons were destroyed, a number that brings to about 200 thousand the weapons destroyed by the PSP since 2014. Of the total destroyed this morning, 7279 were handed over, until June 3, voluntarily by citizens in the course of the amendment to the weapons law approved by the Assembly of the Republic.

Region Reports

Madeira Situation Report Saturday 11th July by Daniel Fernandes

Covid-19 update

There were no new Covid-19 cases yesterday. Despite this, 3 suspected cases were identified at Funchal Airport and they are now in isolation in the Municipality of Funchal. The suspected case that had been identified yesterday at the same airport turned out to be negative, after additional laboratory analysis. The number of cases remains at 95, with 93 recoveries and 2 active cases.

There are 3,111 people under active monitoring and 3,065 people in self-monitoring. So far, 12,045 people are registered in the “Madeira Safe to Discover” tracking app. These include people who are already in the Region and passengers scheduled to travel in the following days or even in the following months. This app has been operational since the 1st of July.

As of Thursday, there had been 1,552 suspected cases, 1,457 of which had come back negative.

As for Covid-19 testing, 28,511 samples from 21,473 people have been analysed at Laboratório de Patologia Clínica do SESARAM (Madeira Health Service lab). A total of 4,460 samples were processed in the last seven days (a daily average of 637 tests). A total of 4,323 passengers have been tested at airports in Funchal and Porto Santo, of whom 3,161 in the last seven days.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 47 calls from Thursday to Friday. This week there was a slight increase in calls, with 327 calls in the last seven days. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,462.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,469 calls, including 141 in the last seven days, with 154 people being monitored (an increase of 9 in the last seven days).

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/10/sao-ja-mais-de-doze-mil-as-pessoas-registadas-no-sistema-madeirasafetodiscover/

https://covidmadeira.pt/situacao-epidemiologica-na-ram-atualizacao-10-07-2020/

Covid-19 tests available in Coimbra for Madeira-bound travellers

Coimbra is the second city in the mainland where passengers travelling to Madeira can be tested, free of charge, for Covid-19. This protocol is particularly aimed at the more than 500 university students from Madeira who are studying in Coimbra.

Samples can be collected in health centres, at the University of Coimbra or at Laboratório de Análises Clínicas de Coimbra. The same laboratory will analyse the samples. Testing can be done from Monday to Friday, between 09h00 and 20h00, and on Saturdays and Sundays, between 14h00 and 20h00.

The Coimbra laboratory has a daily testing capacity of 450 tests. Pedro Ramos, the Madeira Health and Civil Protection Secretary, added that negotiations are underway to extend this scheme to laboratory in Porto and a decision on this is likely to be made by Monday.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/10/viajantes-para-a-madeira-poderao-agora-realizar-teste-a-covid-19-em-coimbra/

750 face shields donated to the PSP

The PSP-Madeira Regional Command received a donation of 750 face shields for use by its officers. The shields were donated by Loja Susana, a company based in Funchal (Avenida Luís Camões Loja 7/8 – S. Martinho). The shields were produced by a Portuguese company, have a very high-quality standard and are certified by ASAE. The Regional Command will distribute the shields to PSP officers. The PSP was the first public institution, other than healthcare providers, to distribute and use face shields. So far, the Madeira Regional Command has been one of the few that has not had any personnel infected with Covid-19.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98360/PSP_recebe_doacao_de_750_viseiras_de_protecao_individual_

Roadworks at Via Rápida (VR1)

The entrance road to VR1 at junction 10 (nó 10 – Santo António – marked in red on the map), heading from Funchal towards Ribeira Brava, will be closed to traffic due to scheduled overnight paving work, from July 14th to July 15th, between 21h00 and 07h00 (following day).

As a diversion, Vialitoral suggests drivers enter VR1 at junction 11 (Santa Luzia – previous junction) or junction 9 (Pilar – following junction).

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98368/Vialitoral_informa_encerramento_da_entrada_para_a_via_rapida_em_Santo_Antonio_

 

Algarve

Covid-19 Situation

The number of confirmed cases in the Algarve as of today is 693 an increase of 7 from yesterday. Of these 277 are active cases, with 7 in hospital and none in intense care.

A total of 416 have recovered to date i.e. 60.02%

President of AMAL says Covid-19 situation under control in Algarve

The president of AMAL – Comunidade Intermunicipal do Algarve and the regional health delegate said today that the epidemiological situation in the region “is under control”, despite the existence of some specific cases.

Those responsible spoke in Loulé (Faro district), at the fortnightly press conference of the Civil Protection District on the covid-19. The representative of the municipalities, António Pina, said that “there can always be a party tomorrow and there will be a peak, but removing the peaks, the situation is under control”.

Health delegate Ana Cristina Guerreiro revealed that there were an average of seven new cases per day in the last week, totalling 693 positive cases and 17 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic, but with no record of fatalities since June 2. There are seven people hospitalized, none in intensive care.

One of the most recent positive cases is that of an employee of a nursing home in Loulé, but the source of the infection is known, “all close contacts are being tested today”. Ana Cristina Guerreiro took the opportunity to reinforce the importance of caregivers for the elderly and children “to have greater attention”, since they deal with more vulnerable populations.

“If you don’t feel well, even if in a light way, call the Saúde 24 line or contact a doctor, looking for help, and don’t go to work,” he said.

As for the outbreak related to a party in Odiáxere, in the municipality of Lagos, a month later and with “1,900 tests carried out”, there were “142 positive cases, 104 still active and 38 people already recovered”. Regarding the concentration of Dutch young people on vacation in Albufeira, the delegate said that it is “worrying and a risky environment” for the transmission of covid-19, but said she was attentive to try to “find solutions to these risks”.

“It is not an exclusive response from Health, but from everyone. With the lack of definition, there is an increase in risk, so it is necessary to find a balance,”he said.

President of Regional Health Administration Concerned about Flu and Covid-19 this winter

ARS “I understand that people are concerned with summer – and this will not be the same – but, from the point of view of health services, I am more concerned with winter. Every year we have flu, this year will be no exception, but this time there will be flu and Covid-19”. This is the opinion of Paulo Morgado, president of the Regional Health Administration (ARS) of the Algarve, left this Friday, July 10th, at the pandemic balance press conference

The official said that “we have to work so that we can have a winter with some tranquillity”.

Paulo Morgado gave as an example the “reinforcement of the flu vaccine”, already announced by the Government, “with the objective of preventing what will be the next season”. The ARS president revealed that the value of the r (contagion rate) in the Algarve “is less than 1”, which is a good sign, although it is necessary not to let your guard down.

“A negative result is just a photograph of the moment. This does not mean that things do not change days later. There are situations of asymptomatic or pre-symptomatic people and this aspect is fundamental for us to understand that the determinations of the health authority are not an order of imprisonment, but rather a job to contain the chains of transmission”, he stressed.

Paulo Morgado revealed that the Mental Health Office, operating in each of the Health Center Groupings in the Algarve, has already assisted 117 people affected by Covid-19, including patients and health professionals.

Covid.19: Aljezur municipality tests employees after 1 positive case

The Municipality of Aljezur, decided to test the Municipality’s employees, after a worker became ill with Covid.19. According to a statement from the Chamber, the service to which the worker belongs has been closed, and all colleagues are quarantined.

There are already 7 positive cases in the municipality, of which 6 are recovering at home and 1 is hospitalized.  The same communiqué reads that the chain of transmission is identified by the Health Authority, with no community transmission. The council calls for the population to follow the recommendations of the DGS – Directorate-General for Health, as a way of safeguarding public health.

 

Azores

Situation Report Azores 9th July 10th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

The Regional Health Authority has reported that, as a result of the 940 tests carried out in the two reference laboratories in the Region in the last 24 hours, three positive cases of COVID-19 on the island of São Miguel have been diagnosed.

The cases refer to men, between the ages of 46 and 66, who disembarked in the Autonomous Region of the Azores from air connections from the mainland. Two of the cases were positive after a screening test for SARS-CoV-2 infection on arrival in the Region, the other case had a positive result in the screening test performed on the sixth day after the first test. One of the diagnosed cases returned to mainland the day after arriving in the Region.

The Ponta Delgada Municipal Health Delegation has already made contact with the National Health Authority to monitor this case.

The new cases in the Region are in a stable clinical condition and the procedures defined for confirmed case, testing and surveillance of close contacts have already been taken care of by the Municipal Health Delegation.

With these more recent cases, 157 cases of infection by the new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19 disease have been  detected in the Region, and there are currently seven active positive cases, six of which on the island of São Miguel and one on Flores island.

 

Portugal Situation Report Friday 10th July 2019

Introduction

Good morning. Unfortunately yesterday was marked by a highest daily number of deaths from Covid-19 since early June and for the second day over 400 confirmed cases. Once again the focus is very much on certain parts of Lisbon, where in 19 parishes the Situation of Calamity measures according to the Prime Minister are almost certainly to be extended. As a likely consequence of this, the Belgium Foreign Ministry has placed Lisbon at “Red” on their traffic light travel advisory system, which appears to require those entering Belgium from Lisbon must undergo quarantine.  The Foreign Ministry have updated the advice and this can be found here:  https://diplomatie.belgium.be/nl . This places  the 19 parishes of Lisbon in the same category as some parts of Catalonia in Spain, where there is a lockdown. This is not good news and a further setback for tourism here.

Whereas we all debate the way figures are often used, to my mind the ones that should give more concern, were those in a statement from the Secretary General of the WHO, Dr.Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who said on Monday that “It took 12 weeks for the world to reach 400 thousand cases of COVID-19. Over the weekend, there were more than 400 thousand cases across the globe”. This is a wake-up call if ever one was needed, that the pandemic is far from over and if anything the growth of the disease is expanding.

Another issue of growing concern is the fact that the Civil Protection public information system which shows basic information concerning all major incidents and rural fires has been down now for nearly 5 days. This is unprecedented and could have implications in the event of a major incident. Luckily during this period there have been no active major fires. Safe Communities is in regular touch with the ANEPC concerning this, but we have no progress unfortunately to announce.

Now, more than ever. we must all do everything possible to prevent rural fires and I would ask everyone to follow the bulletins and advice that we give regularly on our Facebook page. On the issue of emergencies, please note that the emergency number for fire, medical and police is 112. DO NOT use 117 (a redundant forest fire emergency number, which still appears on some websites).

Yesterday we added yet another English language guide to our “Guide” page, this time produced by DECO an association that deals with Consumer protection in Portugal. The focus is on consumer rights in the event of cancellations of flights, package travels, hotel and local accommodation but there are also useful hygiene tips as well, such as shows and festivals, swimming pools and cinemas etc.

It can be downloaded here and at a first read it has been put together very well, illustrated by the fact the Facebook post, and just overnight, has reached around 10,000 people.

Let’s hope for a better day with lower Covid-19 figures! Stay Safe.

Covid-19 DGS Situation

According to the bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health, there have been 13 deaths from Covid-19 since Thursday, all registered in Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, the highest daily number since the beginning of June.

There are also 418 new cases registered, 328 (78.5%) of whom are in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley. In total, there are 1644 deaths from covid-19 and 45,277 confirmed cases.  According to data from the DGS daily bulletin, Portugal has 30,049 recovered cases. There are currently 13,584 active cases.

Also according to DGS data, there are now 487 people hospitalized, 73 of whom are in intensive care units. Twelve patients who died were over 80 years old (five men and seven women) and one woman was between 50 and 59 years old.

Health authorities have 34,102 people under surveillance (877 more) and 1480 (16 less) are awaiting laboratory results. Cough (36%) and fever (28%) continue to be the most reported symptoms in 90% of confirmed cases.

Health

Reguengos de Monsaraz Outbreak Update

The death of another 86-year-old elderly resident of the Reguengos de Monsaraz home increased to 16 the number of deaths related to the covid-19 outbreak in this Alentejo municipality, the council released today.

The number of fatalities resulting from this outbreak, which was detected on June 18, at the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation (FMIVPS), now stands at 16, with three of the deaths occurring at the institution supporting the elderly and another 13 people died in HESE.

The deaths were 14 elderly home users, a professional from the institution and a person from the community. The active cases of the outbreak in this Alentejo municipality now number 131 (on Wednesday there were 133), of whom 85 are in the FMIVPS home and 46 in the community. The Reguengos de Monsaraz home where the covid-19 outbreak was. was subject to general decontamination and, on Friday, a cleaning is taking place and painting works must start, which will last for “three to four weeks”.

Outbreak at S. José Hospital in Lisbon

Twelve people, including patients and staff at the S. José hospital, tested positive for covid-19, after a case of infection was identified on Wednesday at the surgery service, the hospital announced today.

The chairman of the Board of Directors of the Centro Hospitalar Universitário de Lisboa Central, Rosa Valente de Matos, stressed that all procedures were activated and that there is no reason for alarm.

“Hospital de São José has taken and will continue to take all safety measures so that patients can safely come to the hospital, to our emergency department and to our external consultations”, said Rosa Valente de Matos, in a speech in which tried to “calm down and reassure people”.

 

Infarmed says professional bodies will have a voice in defining the dispensation of medicines in the community

Infarmed announced yesterday that associations/bodies from pharmacists and doctors will be among the entities with a voice in defining models for dispensing medicines in proximity, which will be studied by a working group.

“The drafting of proposals will be a participatory process (…) and will have the intervention and contribution of the orders of Pharmacists and Doctors, patient associations and other associations in the sector (hospital pharmacists, pharmacies, the pharmaceutical industry, wholesalers), as well as other hospital units and local health units that developed the proximity dispensation, namely in this pandemic period “, according to a statement by Infarmed, which will lead the working group constituted by order of June 30 of the secretary Deputy State and Health.

The National Authority for Medicines and Health Products (Infarmed) added in the statement that “the main purpose of the dispatch and the institution of this (working) group was to call on hospitals that had already been working together and had experience with projects of community distribution of medicines – in different modalities and stages – to analyse and evaluate these experiences together “.

The Order of Doctors and Pharmacists were today “shocked” because they were excluded from the working group, considering that, in the manner in which it was created, the group will be useless.

Economy

Lisbon Council extends support until the end of the Year

The Lisbon City Council will extend, until 31 December, the extraordinary support granted to institutions, families and associations in the context of the 19-covid pandemic, according to a proposal today unanimously approved.

The Lisbon municipality, approved in April amendments to the operating rules of the Lisbon Social Emergency Fund (FES), which was provided with 25 million euros to support Private Social Solidarity Institutions (IPSS) and other non-profit entities organizations, households, associations, as well as artists and cultural agents.

The council will now renew the support strands for IPSS, households and the Popular Associative Movement, created at FES and which initially ended on June 31. The municipality’s support for the Culture area has already been exhausted and has not been renewed.

Travel

Belgium imposes quarantine on travellers from Lisbon

The Belgian authorities yesterday included the Lisbon region in the lot of “red zones” considered to be of high risk due to covid-19, which implies a mandatory quarantine for travellers arriving in Belgium.

According to the information available on the website of the Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, people from these “red” regions have to carry out tests on arrival in Belgium and comply with a quarantine, but the exact contours of the measures are not clear and cause questions even to the Belgian press, and the Belgian authorities have not yet provided further clarifications.

The rest of the Portuguese territory is in the “orange” group, which also includes Spain – with the exception of the two regions classified as high risk -, Greece, Cyprus, Denmark, United Kingdom and Iceland.

 

Two Spanish municipalities ask for closure of borders with Portugal

The municipalities of Villanueva del Fresno and Valencia del Mombuey, located in the province of Badajoz, in Spain, have sent a letter to the Spanish government delegate in Extremadura in which they request the closure of borders with Portugal in the area of ​​these municipalities along the Alentejo. At issue is the outbreak of Reguengos de Monsaraz and the emergence of new cases of Covid-19 in the Spanish region.

“We request that the procedures for the closure of borders and border crossings in our municipality be started urgently, allowing only the passage for cross-border workers who, due to force majeure, need to do so daily, until a cross-border protocol is established for the control of Covid-19 in the neighbouring areas”, reads the letter that the mayors Ramón Díaz Farías (Villanueva) and Manuel Naharro Gata (Valencia) sent to Yolanda García Seco, delegate of the Spanish government in Extremadura.

In the letter, the two political leaders also asked for a “cross-border public health protocol, as well as the adoption of any measures necessary for the control and isolation of Covid-19

For these reasons, the mayors of Spanish municipalities say that in recent days they have witnessed the emergence of different outbreaks and new positive cases on both sides of the border between Extremadura and Alentejo. “We believe it is necessary to standardize public health action protocols in these places. In some parts of the country, people’s mobility is being limited when there are only 100 cases, we should think of something similar in our border area”, they point out.

Spain records 257 new coronavirus cases, the largest daily rise since May

Most of the infections were detected in areas with confirmed Covid-19 outbreaks, including Catalonia, Galicia and Aragón

Covid-19 confirmed cases in Spain show Coronavirus outbreaks in several Spanish regions have led to a sharp spike in the number of Covid-19 cases in Spain. According to the latest figures from the Health Ministry, released on Wednesday afternoon, there were 257 new cases in the past 24 hours. This is the highest number recorded since May 30, when 271 new infections were registered. Just over two weeks after Spain lifted the state of alarm and entered the new normality after a prolonged coronavirus lockdown and de-escalation period, the figures indicate that the crisis is far from over.

Although the latest figures showed a spike in new cases, the number of coronavirus deaths fell to the lowest number on record, with nine registered in the last seven days.

Enforcement

Public Prosecutor’s Office proceeding with “inquiries” about the outbreak Reguengos de Monsaraz care home

The Public Prosecutor’s Office (MP) indicated today that “it is proceeding with inquiries” about the outbreak of covid-19 that appeared in a home in Reguengos de Monsaraz, in the district of Évora, which has already caused 16 deaths.

Asked by the Lusa agency about the possible opening of an inquiry, the magistrate of the coordinating MP of the Évora District replied: “The Public Prosecutor’s Office is investigating the matter and the situation in question”. Lusa tried this afternoon to get a comment from the president of the Council of Reguengos de Monsaraz, José Calixto, about the “investigations” of the MP, but the attempts proved to be unsuccessful.

The number of fatalities resulting from this epidemic outbreak, detected on June 18, at the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation (FMIVPS), is up to 16 yesterday, with three of the deaths occurring at the institution supporting the elderly and the other 13 people who died in HESE.

Other Health issues

Praia da Parede due to contaminated water

Praia da Parede, in Cascais, in the district of Lisbon, is banned from bathing, after having recorded microbiological values ​​above the reference parameters, following periodic analysis carried out on the water quality.

In a note posted on Facebook, the municipality says that this situation determines the prohibition of bathing practice only at Praia da Parede, not affecting the rest. “A new sample was taken to carry out a counter-analysis on the quality of bathing water. If the results of this harvest show that the water quality is restored, the ban will be lifted”, it can be read in the note.

 

Câmara de Cascais also indicates that the other beaches in the municipality were the target of monitoring and analysis, with the results within the reference parameters.

Other news

Action against members of security forces who write racist remarks on social media

Elements of security forces and services that write comments of a racist, xenophobic or any other type of discrimination on social networks will become more supervised and sanctioned, it was announced today.

This is one of the measures contained in the plan to prevent manifestations of discrimination in the security forces and services (FSS) of the General Inspectorate for Internal Administration (IGAI) and which yesterday had its first reflection together with the top leaders of the PSP, GNR and Foreigners and Borders Service.

The inspector general of Internal Administration, Anabela Cabral Ferreira, explained to journalists that this plan has programmatic measures, related to the recruitment and training of FSS elements, and rules of immediate execution, which is the case of comments from PSP elements, GNR and SEF on social networks.

“Social networks are now the public domain. Everything that happens on social networks is known to the community. We cannot accept that a police officer who has sworn to defend the rule of law and who represents the authority of the State, who when he wears his uniform promotes the defines of those values, namely the principle of equality, and when he takes off his uniform, can make comments of a racist nature, xenophobic or any other discriminatory form on social networks” said Anabela Cabral Ferreira.

In this sense, the inspector general of Internal Administration asked the heads of the PSP, GNR and SEF to issue internal rules in order to promote that these behaviours so they do not exist.

According to the inspector general, in recent years 23 disciplinary proceedings have taken place at IGAI related to discriminatory practices, but also associated with the suspicion of physical aggression by elements of the FSS. The national director of the PSP said today that this police is “very attentive” to discriminatory comments that police officers may make on social media, but admitted that it is a difficult task until identification is achieved.

“We noticed some lack of responsibility when looking for a computer on social networks. Effectively, it is a problem and it is not easy, because obviously it is a little bit like the game of cat and mouse until it is possible to arrive at the identification of who is making certain statements and they can also pretend to be policemen”, said Magina da Silva..

Portugal and Germany underline priorities for strong Europe in security and defence

The Minister of National Defense, João Gomes Cravinho, and the German Minister of Defense, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, met in Berlin, where they began to exchange views on the response of the respective countries and the role of the Armed Forces in combating pandemic crisis.

The leaders of Portugal and Germany, countries that make up, with Eslóvenia, the Trio of Presidencies of the Council of the European Union, discussed the priorities for a stronger Europe in the field of security and defense. Both agreed on the importance of acting in solidarity and ambition to face the current crisis and the long-term implications of the rapid change in the security environment.

Ministers underlined the need to continue strengthening the European Union’s capacity for action, through progress on the various European defense initiatives. They reaffirmed their intention to achieve results in the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) projects, the European Peace Support Mechanism and the European Defense Fund, in order to strengthen the European defense technological and industrial base, among others.

Civil Protection without page on fire information for five days

For the fifth consecutive day, technical problems prevent public consultation of data on rural fires or any other operational occurrence centralized in Civil Protection.

The system failed on Sunday and has not yet been restored to normal. During that period of time, when half of the country was on orange alert by the Civil Protection and the other half on yellow alert, 344 fires were registered in Portugal – none of which was particularly serious.

It was also at this stage that the Prime Minister warned that the country is now entering the most critical phase of fire risk and that maximum prevention is required, although he argues that the combat system is strengthened and more professionalized. According to data Sunday, July 5, was the most complicated for firefighters with the record of 104 fires. Since then, the average has been 80 daily fires per day.

Region Reports

Madeira Situation Report Friday 10th July by Daniel Fernandes

Covid-19 update

There were no new Covid-19 cases yesterday. However, a suspected case was identified at Funchal Airport. The passenger was tested in the airport and is currently in isolation in a residence in the Municipality of Funchal. Laboratory analysis and an epidemiological investigation are underway. The number of cases remains at 95, with 93 recoveries and 2 active cases. All current active cases were discovered as a result of checks at Funchal Airport. They are currently in isolation in their own homes and have not required hospital treatment so far.

There are 3,045 people under active monitoring and 3,181 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of Wednesday, there had been 1,552 suspected cases, of which 1,457 were not confirmed.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal Airport, 3,869 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 18h00). Overall, 27,918 samples have been processed in the Madeira Autonomous Region. The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 55 calls from Wednesday to Thursday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,415.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,601 calls, with 154 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/09/novo-caso-suspeito-de-covid-19-detectado-hoje-no-aeroporto/

PSP to increase monitoring in restaurants, catering and drinking premises

The Madeira Regional Command of the PSP (Police) announced it will increase monitoring in such premises and reaffirmed its commitment to ensure compliance with all legal and sanitary rules that aim to prevent Covid-19 contagion in Madeira and Porto Santo.

All premises (commercial and retail, service providers, within shopping centres, restaurants and catering services, for drinking, with or without a dance floor and other nightclubs) must close at 02h00. However, premises with a closing time before 02h00 (pharmacies, clinics, veterinary centres with Accident and Emergency departments and funeral homes), must close at the time that had been originally authorised.

Petrol stations can be open after 02h00, solely for the sale of petrol and for cars to be refuelled. However, the sale of alcoholic drinks is forbidden at petrol or service stations, from 00h00 until 08h00. The consumption of alcoholic drinks is forbidden for the entire day (24 hours) in outdoor areas accessible to the public and on the streets. Outdoor spaces belonging to licensed restaurants, cafes and bars, are exempt from this ban.

Crowd gatherings must be avoided at the entrance of such premises, which must comply with the maximum capacity limits, as long as sanitary safety distancing is kept. The PSP will fine those who do not comply with these rules. The PSP can also order the temporary closure of premises and the end of activities, order crowds to disperse. This does not prevent the issuing a potential fine for the crime of disobedience and the arrest for resistance or repeated non-compliance with the rules.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98284/PSP_diz_que_vai_intensificar_acoes_de_fiscalizacao_nos_estabelecimentos_de_restauracao_e_bebidas

Water supply disruption in Funchal

The Municipality of Funchal informed that work will be carried out today on a water reservoir, from 09h00 until 13h00. The following areas will be affected: Caminho dos Saltos, Levada da Corujeira and Estrada Comandante Camacho de Freitas.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98286/Intervencao_no_reservatorio_dos_Saltos_vai_comprometer_abastecimento_de_agua_no_Monte

 

Algarve

Covid-19 Situation

There are 7 more cases of Covid-19 in the Algarve, according to the epidemiological bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS), which has just been released. The region now has a total of 683 confirmed cases, in numbers accumulated since the beginning of the pandemic.

In the neighbouring region of Alentejo, DGS reports that there are 11 new cases of infection, but does not report any more deaths. Since the beginning of the pandemic, the Alentejo now totals 562 cases in accumulated numbers.

Enforcement

Prosecutor accuses young man for violating mandatory confinement in Lagos

A 20-year-old man, infected with covid-19, was accused by the Lagos Prosecutor’s Office of a crime of aggravated disobedience. He was caught by the PSP for violating the obligation of confinement at home.

In a statement, the MP reveals that it “filed an indictment for trial in an abbreviated case” against the accused.

The young man, of foreign nationality, was detected by the PSP on June 26 driving a car, “thus violating the obligation of confinement at home that had been imposed on him by the local health authority”. The defendant had tested positive for covid-19 and was prohibited from leaving the house.

Leisure

New Algarve service brings a bartender Home

‘Cocktails’ prepared live by a ‘bartender’ at home is the new service that a bar in Faro is promoting this summer in the Algarve, an idea that emerged during the confinement caused by the pandemic of Covid-19.

The service, which can also be carried out at the request of companies, includes the ‘bartender’ and all the logistics associated with the preparation of drinks, with several menus, including non-alcoholic ‘cocktails’ for children, with gums or ‘marshmallows’.

The project started with “the idea of ​​maintaining the functioning of the bar, the jobs and avoiding gatherings and illegal parties”, said the executive director of the EQEPEC group (acronym for Eu Quero, Eu Pode, Eu Consigo), which is promoting the service.

“Being able to take this service to customers makes more sense than taking ‘take-away’ drinks”, he notes, noting that ‘Barman at home’ is “a turnkey service”, which includes everything: glasses, ice, drinks and even personalized cups for children.

In addition, given the current context, the three ‘bartenders’ available to do the job – among them João Rodrigues, distinguished as the best Portuguese ‘bartender’ in 2016 – complying with “all the required sanitary rules”, guarantees the businessman.

Anonymous report about child falling from cliff leads Police to search

An anonymous report about the possible fall of a child from a cliff in Portimão led the police to undertake a search, so far without success. The authorities suggest that it is a “bad joke”.

“Please, a three-month-old child was thrown from the cliff at Praia da Rocha. Please look for the child.” This anonymous report, sent to the Maritime Police of Portimão, this Thursday, led the authorities to launch a search operation, which proved to be unsuccessful.

The police received the report by email. The sender did not identify himself or provide additional information. According to the commander of the Port of Portimão, Rodrigo Paços Gonzalez, despite being an anonymous complaint, one cannot “rule out any scenarios and the decision was to proceed with the searches”. In the late afternoon, operations were suspended, with no results.

In view of the possibility that it was a “bad joke”, the commander proposes to report the situation to the Public Prosecutor’s Office so that possible criminal responsibilities can be investigated, taking into account the amount of emergency and relief resources required. commit to this operation. In addition to the Maritime Police, the searches involved elements of the Navy, the Instituto de Socorro ao Casufragos and the Voluntary Firefighters of Portimão.

PJ investigates death of man in fire in Portimão restaurant

The Judicial Police (PJ) is investigating the circumstances in which the death of a man occurred on Wednesday night during a fire in a restaurant on Três Castelos beach in Portimão, a police source told Lusa today.

The same source declined to provide further information as the case is under investigation. According to the District Relief Operations Center (CDOS) in Faro, the man, around 50 years old, was found dead during a fire in a restaurant on the Praia dos Três Castelos, near Praia da Rocha, which occurred at 10:30 pm Wednesday.

“When the firefighters arrived at the scene, the man was in cardiorespiratory arrest, and it was not possible to reverse the situation. The death was declared on the scene by the team from the Medical Emergency Institute [INEM],”said the source.

The PJ is now trying to ascertain the circumstances in which the man died, as well as the origin of the fire, which partially affected the beach restaurant. 18 operatives from the Portimão Voluntary Firemen, the Maritime Police, the PJ and INEM were mobilized to the location, supported by nine vehicles.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 9th July 10th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

 The authorities on the island of Terceira have discovered that the man, diagnosed with “Covid-19” and supposed to stay there until he’d fully ‘recovered’, flew back to continental Portugal on Wednesday.

His second test, carried out on the 7th of July, produced a ‘positive’ result and despite having been told this by telephone at about 12:00 hrs on July 8th by the “COVID-19” ‘Home, Patient Monitoring Team’, the man left for the mainland, without the authority’s permission or knowledge.

The Regional Health Authority reports that the 1,105 tests were carried out during the last 24 hours but no new ‘positive’ cases were revealed.

The Region has had 154 cases of infection, now left with 5 ‘active’ cases; 4 on the island of São Miguel, and 1 on the island of Flores.  Since the outbreak began on the 15th of March, 130 people have recovered, three have returned to mainland Portugal but sadly, 16 have died.

 

Portugal Situation Report Thursday 9th July 2020

Introduction

Good morning – We start this morning on a very sad note that of the death of a young GNR guard aged 27 who tragically died whilst on duty in a traffic accident on the AL 1 in Santarem which happened on 6th July.

Carlos Pereira, a 28-year-old guard, was admitted to the hospital in Santarém, in an induced coma with severe chest injuries on Tuesday and died yesterday.

We await the official news from the GNR of the situation of his colleague who was in the vehicle at the time.

The driver of the other car who sustained serious injuries was detected driving at more than 150 km / h on a radar that was installed five kilometres before the place where the collision occurred. The GNR car was monitoring cleaning work on the side when it was rammed from behind.

In respect of the family of the victim we did not publish graphic photos of the accident nor the statements in the media naming the death until confirmed on the GNR website. I believe this is what distinguishes us from the mainstream media. We send our sincere condolences to family and friends of Carlos Pereira

As expected, there was plenty of comment yesterday concerning the irresponsible behaviour by young Dutch nationals in Albufeira  over the weekend which has once again highlighted the problems of “The Strip” as far as alcohol is concerned. Safe Communities Portugal has taken this up with government to try an improve awareness by tourists of the rules and laws in Portugal concerning preventing the spread of Covid-19.

Whereas there has been some focus on the irresponsible actions of some younger people in illegal parties, and in Albufeira last weekend, it was very pleasing to see yesterday an excellent initiative by the National Federation of Youth Associations (FNAJ) informing that it will promote, on July 11, a national action, carried out simultaneously in 20 cities, to raise awareness of a lack of safety.

With the slogan “The risk is real. Be the hero of this summer!”, the initiative, which has the support of the Presidency of the Republic, will involve 24 regional / district federations and youth associations in the distribution of protective masks on coastal beaches and rivers and parks, including Praia de Faro. Well done, a great initiative.

Safety is clearly the message as yesterday. after a recent slightly downward trend, the number of new cases rose by 433 the highest daily increase for some time. Unfortunately with the focus based on recent trends, should this continue it will make it more difficult to convince countries concerning travel advice to Portugal, including of course the UK.

Regarding travel to the UK and the 14 day quarantine rule, we received an enquiry from a person who had booked a return ticket from Portugal to UK returning to Portugal in 5 days. The official GOV.UK position on this is:  “When you arrive in the UK, you will not be allowed to leave the place where you’re staying for the first 14 days you’re in the UK (known as ‘self-isolating’) unless you’re arriving from an exempt country”. This is because it can take up to 14 days for coronavirus symptoms to appear. If you’re travelling to the UK for less than 14 days, you will be expected to self-isolate for the length of your stay.”https://www.gov.uk/…/coronavirus-covid-19-how-to-self…

If this affects you, please contact your airline.

For the third day the ANEPC website dashboard that provides operational information of incidents and fires is still not working due to technical problems. We have raised this at a very senior government level.

I recommend that you take time to read this morning report as there are a variety of articles, concerning health topics, the economy, employment, the situation in Lisbon, international travel plus of course our regional reports. In fact our “one stop shop of news” covers some 33 items this morning.

Hope you have a Safe Day

David Thomas President Safe Communities Portugal

Headlines

State of Calamity remains in 19 Parishes in Lisbon Metropolitan area

The Prime Minister said today that, for now, the state of calamity should remain in 19 parishes in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area and that there is no reason to raise the level of alert in general.

“I do not anticipate that the classification status of the different parts of the country will change in the next fortnight. The good news is that for now nothing indicates that we have to raise the level of alert that prevails in most of the country,” he said.

Regarding the Lisbon Metropolitan Area as a whole, the Prime Minister admitted the possibility of “some evolution”.

“We will see, but there is still more than a wee to make the decision”, he said.

The Mayor of Sintra said today that the latest indicators point to a systematic decrease in the number of active cases of covid-19 in his municipality, but warned that the path is “of thin ice”.

DGS Covid 19 

This Wednesday Portugal registered two more deaths by Covid-19, compared to Tuesday, and another 443 confirmed cases of infection, of which 327 are in the region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, according to data from the Directorate-General for Health (DGS).

According to the daily epidemiological bulletin, the total number of deaths by Covid-19 since the beginning of the pandemic is now 1,631 and the total number of confirmed cases is 44,859.

DGS registered 512 hospitalizations (one more compared to yesterday) and 74 patients in intensive care (two less compared to Tuesday).

Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, with a total of 21,256 infected, remains the region with the highest number of new cases, with 207 more in the last 24 hours.

The two registered fatalities concern the region of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo (LVT) and Alentejo, with one death each. They are a woman between 50-59 years old and a man between 70-79 years old.

In relation to the 443 new cases, 327 are from the Lisbon region (total of 21,256). The North has 77 more cases (17900) and the Centre another 21 (4232). Alentejo, where an outbreak is underway in Reguengos de Monsaraz, has seven more infections (551) and the Algarve has another 13 positive patients (676). In the Azores there are two more infected people identified (151).

Health

Covid-19: Number of children infected in a kindergarten in Caldas da Rainha rises to seven

The number of children infected with covid-19 in a kindergarten in Caldas da Rainha has increased to seven yesterday, with two more positive cases among users at Lar do Montepio, the council said.

The results of tests on covid-19 revealed yesterday by the Câmara das Caldas da Rainha, in the district of Leiria, “were all negative except for one child” who tested positive, increasing the number of infected children related to the outbreak from six to seven – the outbreak was  detected two weeks ago in a local nursery school.

There are also three employees (two educators and a driver) and four family members of children who attend the same kindergarten infected with the new coronavirus and, according to the municipality, the results of seven out of a total of 40 tests have yet to be known.

Prime Minister’s statement following 10th meeting at Infarmed

The Prime Minister said yesterday that meetings with epidemiologists at Infarmed, in Lisbon, will continue, but the next one had not been scheduled because the pandemic situation in the country is stabilized and there is no relevant new information to share.

Asked by journalists if the meetings at Infarmed will end, where the President of the Republic and party representatives, among other entities, will participate to share information about the evolution of covid-19 in Portugal, the Prime Minister denied the end of these meetings and admitted that a new one could take place by the end of this month.

Then, justifying the reason for not knowing the date of the next meeting with the epidemiologists, António Costa observed that the President of the Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, “explained well” at the end of this morning what is happening, that, in terms of the evolution of the covid-19 pandemic, “the country is in a stable situation”.

“There is already a lot of information shared and there are two important studies that are underway: One from the National Institute of Public Health focused on measuring the level of immunization; another led by the Institute of Public Health of the University of Porto to measure the specificity of health chains transmission, namely in the Lisbon region. Until these studies are concluded, in principle at the end of the month – unless there is a significant change that justifies it – no new meeting is planned “, he declared.

Positive Covid-19 cases forces closure of Paços de Ferreira council building

The Câmara de Paços de Ferreira announced yesterday that four more cases of covid-19 were detected among employees of the municipality, which led the health authority to close the Paços do Ferreira council building to the public.

“The Local Public Health Authority, in conjunction with the City Council, in view of the situation described, decided to temporarily close the headquarters building of the municipality, with all employees in compulsory isolation”, said an official statement.

“Despite the constraints that this situation will naturally cause, the City Council, its employees and the entire executive, will continue to work, guaranteeing the citizens all the help and collaboration needed, especially in such a complex and difficult time that the municipality, the country and the world is going through “, as was noted in the statement.

The Council of Paços de Ferreira will continue, over the next few days, to issue public information on this situation, whenever justified.

Reguengos de Monsaraz Update

The death of a 73-year-old man, a resident of the Reguengos de Monsaraz (Évora) home, increased the number of deaths related to the covid-19 outbreak to 15 in this county.

The active cases of covid-19 in the municipality are now 133 of whom 86 were at the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation (FMIVPS), where the outbreak began on June 18, and 47 in the community, according to the communiqué issued by the municipality and Civil Protection Authority of Reguengos de Monsaraz.

There are no elderly persons in the home building after the infected persons have been transferred to the multipurpose pavilion of the fair and Exhibition Park, while those who are not infected are in the family home or in other support facilities.

The home is going to be the target of a general decontamination today.

Meanwhile the Espírito Santo Hospital of Évora (HESE) reactivated a ward for patients with covid-19 to “respond” to the “increased pressure” during hospitalization, caused by the outbreak that arose in a home in Reguengos de Monsaraz.

Study separates connection between trains and new cases in Lisbon

A study presented today at Infarmed seems to remove a decisive link between rail transport and the new cases of covid-19 in the region of Lisbon and the Vale do Tejo, said the President of the Republic today.

“A study was presented that seems to demonstrate that there is no connection between rail transport, that is, by train, the lines in the framework of this region, and the pandemic outbreak. It is new data that was not known, but that has been studied in a quantified manner, “he said.

The head of state said that “the region of Lisbon and the Vale do Tejo deserved particular attention” in this session and, in the picture of this situation, it was noted “the weight that has come to gain over the past few weeks” the population that is between 20 and 30 years.

According to the President of the Republic, experts consider “that cohabitation is the most important factor in terms of the causal explanation of the outbreaks that emerged, soon followed by social gatherings, which has been gaining importance”.

PSD warns that if combatting the disease in Lisbon it will fail in the entire Country

The PSD party warned yesterday that if the fight against covid-19 in the Lisbon region fails, the whole country will also suffer negative consequences, and recommended prudence in view of the “apparent” stabilization of the number of new cases of infection.

Ricardo Batista Leite started by mentioning that the president of the PSD, Rui Rio, participated in the meeting by videoconference and then spoke about the difficulties that are being faced by the tourism sector, particularly in the Algarve.

“If we fail in the Lisbon response, we will be failing the country. When we look at the number of outbreaks outside the Lisbon region, we realize that at this moment there are 48, when two weeks ago there were only 12”, he warned.

In this context, the PSD deputy pointed out that there is an increase in the number of hospitalizations and mortality.

Government does not know when Health Centres will return in Full

The Government does not know when health centres will return to full operation or when cancer diagnoses will be resumed, but it is accelerating the process “as much as possible”, guaranteed the Secretary of State Deputy and Health.

“Many of the facilities have strong constraints” in the creation of separate circuits for patients with covid-19 and others, he pointed out, saying that the Government is trying to find “concrete solutions” together with the regional health administrations.

57 Medical Boards have resumed Activity

The Government announced today in parliament that 57 medical boards in the country have already resumed activity and admits a “delay impact” in the issuing of multiple certificates for people with disabilities that “no one could have avoided”.

According to the Secretary of State for Inclusion of People with Disabilities, Ana Sofia Antunes, who was today with the government team of the Ministry of Labour, Solidarity and Social Security to be heard in parliamentary committee at a statutory hearing, across the country they have already resumed the activity 57 medical boards, between June 15 and July 1, there is still no concrete data to say how many medical boards have already been made.

DGS Rejects health screens in any area of Portugal

The Director-General of Health yesterday rejected the imposition of a health screen around Reguengos de Monsaraz or in any other region of the country, saying that the outbreak of covid-19 in a nursing home in that country Alentejo municipality is circumscribed.

In order to move towards a heath screen around the municipality “certain characteristics would have to be gathered, which is not the case at the moment in any region of Portugal”, he declared.

DGS recognises increased risk of contagion by asymptomatic people

Portugal is one of the countries that discovers the most asymptomatic cases of covid-19, said the director-general of Health today, pointing out that they are an “increased risk” of disease transmission because they do not protect themselves or allow let others protect themselves.

“We do tests directed at many asymptomatic people. We are investigating outbreaks strongly, when we detect a positive case, we are looking for more cases”, said Graça Freitas, indicating that people without symptoms but infected “can transmit the disease”.

However, “because they are asymptomatic and do not know each other, they constitute an increased risk” and it is not known “exactly the degree to which asymptomatic people spread the disease”, he stressed.

Almost half of people began drinking less alcohol during Confinement

A national survey released today concluded that the confinement caused by the covid-19 pandemic led 42% of people to drink less, due to the lack of the usual company or the desire to have a better lifestyle.

The survey was carried out by the Intervention Service for Addictive Behaviors and Dependencies (SICAD), between April and May, and included 950 alcohol consumers aged 18 or over, who answered questions via the internet.

The opinion study, which aimed to assess the impact of the covid-19 pandemic on alcohol consumption patterns, reveals that, during the confinement period, 21% of people started drinking more, while 37% continued to drink the same.

Infarmed reports on access to medicines by patients

The usual press conference to update the situation of the covid-19 pandemic in Portugal took place this Wednesday with the presence of the Assistant Secretary of State and Health, Jamila Madeira, the Director-General of Health, Graça Freitas, and the President from Infarmed, Rui Santos Ivo.

Regarding access to medicines by patients, the president of Infarmed said that “initiatives have been developed by hospitals so that they can reach patients more easily”. “We have been working together with partners in the sector to analyse the development of this type of initiatives. It was necessary to define some guidelines to strengthen access to the medicine. In the period between April and May, in 150 thousand patients, there were more than 30 thousand who had access to the medicine either at home or at the place of their election “, said Rui Santos Ivo. “There are some drugs that, for your safety, can be dispensed in pharmacies”, he concluded.

Travel and Tourism

Exclusion of Portugal from tourist corridors criticized

The exclusion of Portugal from the list of safe tourist corridors for the United Kingdom is wrong and is based on little rigorous scientific analysis, say experts from the National School of Public Health (ENSP) on the covid-19 barometer, today disclosed.

“Interpreting reported incidence values of cases without considering other epidemiological risk indicators, the geographical distribution and that different countries detect different percentages of the actual total of cases is wrong and led to the adoption of inappropriate policies that, without contributing in a relevant way to prevent transmission, have negative socio-economic, political and diplomatic consequences”, the document reads.

According to researchers Vasco Ricoca Peixoto and Alexandre Abrantes, from the Public Health Research Center, the British authorities’ adoption of the number of cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the last 14 days as the main epidemiological risk criterion “does not correctly reflect the severity epidemic in the country” and penalizes the “comprehensive testing policy” adopted in Portugal.

As an alternative, the ENSP’s covid-19 barometer recommends the inclusion of other indicators, namely, “case sub-detection, testing policy, diagnostic testing policies, case severity, measured by mortality rates, mortality, general hospitalization and in units intensive treatment, and geographical distribution of cases”.

Travellers to Belgium from Portugal may have to take test in Belgium

Travellers arriving in Belgium from Portugal may have to be tested at covid-19 or have a quarantine period for coming from a “country at risk”, according to information from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Belgium.

Effective today, the latest update to the official Belgian traffic light list includes Portugal – along with Spain, Greece, Cyprus, Denmark, the United Kingdom and Iceland – in the orange group: countries to which travel is authorized, but people will be subjected to testing, will have to comply with a quarantine period or other measure to be taken by the Belgian authorities.

Portugal is Safe Destination but compliance with rules depends on us all

The Secretary of State for Tourism, Rita Marques, defended yesterday that Portugal is a safe tourist destination, emphasizing the importance of complying with safety and hygiene rules for this to remain.

“Portugal, Spain, we are all safe countries, but it depends on all of us that it happens and can be. The rules are known, the protocol is known, distance is required and respiratory hygiene is also known. It is up to all of us to ensure that we can interact, complying with the rules, to make Portugal a safe tourist destination”, said Rita Marques, who was speaking at a ‘webinar’ of the Institute for the Promotion of Latin America and the Caribbean (IPDAL).

During her intervention, the official recalled that, in 2019, Portugal registered a growth of guests from Spain in the order of 10% and 8% in the case of overnight stays.

“Spain has been an important source market. In addition to Spain, everyone who lands [in this country] is also an important source market for us. We have been working hard to build the Iberian tourist offer”, she added.

Rita Marques also underlined that more than 70% of international tourists visiting Portugal travel by air, therefore, the Government “has been reinforcing the program to stimulate the acquisition of new routes”.

Enforcement

In addition to the problems of Dutch students over the last weekend in Albufeira there has been instances where they have not respected the rules concerning social distancing on beaches in the Algarve.

Questioned by Expresso about the behaviour of these tourists, the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs limited itself to saying that it “reinforces”, to those traveling to Portugal, the need for “compliance with local safety rules”, in particular “the importance of keeping two meters of social distance and the obligatory use of a mask in many places, such as shops, restaurants and public transport”.

But these are rules that almost all Dutch people, mostly in Albufeira on trips from finalists, have not followed since they arrived in the Algarve, with social networks becoming full of images of hundreds of young people on the ‘street of bars’ consuming alcohol , acquired in establishments operating with music.

Economy and employment

15,000 Public Administration workers are teleworking

The Minister of Administrative Modernization, Alexandra Leitão, said today that there are still about 15 thousand Public Administration workers in teleworking, “another number in partial teleworking”, and that meetings are taking place with unions to discuss this.

In May, 68,000 public administration workers were telecommuting, a measure adopted to curb the spread of covid-19, he added.

The minister also said that the Government is listening to the unions, in order to understand what problems they pose to teleworking, with two more meetings expected later this month.

After hearing the unions, a study will be carried out, followed by joint work with the Ministry of Labor, Solidarity and Social Security, he explained.

The next step is the presentation of a formal regulation proposal, followed by formal negotiation of the project.

Social Security already paid 992 million Euros in exceptional support

Social Security has so far paid 992 million euros in exceptional support to respond to covid-19, which currently covers 1.3 million people and 108 thousand companies, said the Minister of Labor today.

An official source from the Ministry of Labour told Lusa that the 108 thousand companies correspond to those that benefited from the simplified lay-off, and the total number of companies that benefited from exceptional support in response to covid-19 amounts to 149 thousand.

Of the total number of workers on the staff of companies that resorted to the simplified lay-off, 877 thousand people were covered by this exceptional measure, said the minister who said that the amount of support granted so far under the ‘ simplified lay-off amounts’ to 718 million euros.

This amount does not include the amount corresponding to the exemption from Social Security contributions.

Stabilisation for workers in ‘Lay-Off’ will reach 470,000 People

The stabilization supplement, which will be paid this month to workers who are in ‘lay-off’, will reach about 470 thousand people, said the Minister of Labor, Ana Mendes Godinho today.

Ana Mendes Godinho, who is being heard at the Labour and Social Security Commission, stated that this support, aimed at those with a salary above 635 euros and up to 1,270 euros, will be paid at the end of July.

This supplement is aimed at people covered by either the simplified ‘lay-off’ or the normal ‘lay-off’ (of the Labour Code).

Government Guarantees that Careers in Public Administration will not be frozen

The Minister of Modernization of the State, Alexandra Leitão, guaranteed today that the Government will not freeze careers in Public Administration, given the crisis caused by the pandemic of covid-19, and that the review of careers “is not taboo”.

According to the minister, work on the review of special careers, such as careers at consulates, justice and health, whose need has been signaled by several ministries, is “already beginning”.

However, Alexandra Leitão admitted that there will be a review of special careers that already exist, “but, in principle, not the creation of new special careers”.

The official considered that this will not be an easy job, especially in the context of a budgetary results that will “eventually” be worse in 2021.

Leisure

Government Provides 3 million Euro to IVDP for Port Wine Storage

The Government will make available three million euros of the management balances of the Douro and Port Wine Institute (IVDP) for the storage of Port wine, mitigating the losses caused by the covid-19 pandemic.

As the executive explained, this measure aims to minimize the sector’s losses, namely, due to reduced consumption and the breakdown of markets due to the pandemic.

 

Volunteering

More Than 200 Volunteers Participate in Awareness Actions on De-confinement

More than 200 volunteers participate on Saturday in an initiative to raise awareness about security deflation, during the covid-19 pandemic, distributing masks in 20 cities, and which has the support of the President of the Republic.

With the slogan “The risk is real, be the hero of this summer”, the national action promoted by the National Federation of Youth Associations (FNAJ), on July 11, at 16:00, a national action, held simultaneously in 20 cities from the continent and islands, it will involve 24 regional / district federations and youth associations in the distribution of protective masks on coastal and river beaches and parks, and will also include the participation of several secretaries of state.

According to the FNAJ, “the action is intended to alert to the security measures to be taken in this phase of the pandemic and to commit young people in the fight against covid-19, positioning them as public health agents”.

Other news

ANEPC Website difficulties continue into the third day

Civil Protection operational information is unavailable on the Internet

The operational information from the National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority (ANEPC) has since Tuesday been “temporarily unavailable” on the official website, due to technical problems.

“For technical reasons, operational information is temporarily unavailable in the usual area. We are solving the situation”, can be read in a short note published on the website http://www.prociv.pt/.

While the problem is not solved, ANEPC is reporting the occurrences, by district, at 09:00 and 19:00.

So far, according to ProCiv, there are no significant rural fires to register and all occurrences were resolved in the initial attack.

Contacted by the agency Lusa, an ANEPC source, declined to give further explanations.

Region Reports

Madeira Situation Report by Daniel Fernandes

Covid-19 update

There were no new Covid-19 cases yesterday. There were also 3 recoveries, 2 from Madeira residents who had returned to the island, and another from a non-resident traveller who had arrived in Madeira last week and who has been staying in the Municipality of Calheta. This means the number of cases remains at 95, with 93 recoveries and 2 active cases. All current active cases were discovered as a result of checks at Funchal Airport. They are currently in isolation in their own homes and have not required hospital treatment so far.

There are 2,911 people under active monitoring and 3,326 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of Tuesday, there had been 1,552 suspected cases, of which 1,457 were not confirmed.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal Airport, 3,545 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 18h00). Overall, 27,710 samples have been processed in the Madeira Autonomous Region.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 52 calls from Tuesday to Wednesday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,360.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,585 calls, with 153 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/08/numero-de-casos-activos-na-ram-agora-e-so-de-2-ha-3-recuperados/

Most vessels allowed to dock in Madeira

All vessels, apart from cruise ships, are now allowed to dock in the Madeira Autonomous Region. Passengers and crew members who would like to board or disembark must not have Covid-19 symptoms and/or fever.

Docking is authorised under the following circumstances:

a) All passengers and crew members must have their temperature measured on arrival at ports and marinas in the Madeira Autonomous Region

b) All passengers and crew members must complete the traveller registration form on arrival or before arrival in the Madeira Autonomous Region. The form is available online (https://madeirasafe.com/#/login).

c) All passengers and crew members must present evidence of a negative Covid-19 test, carried out by laboratories certified by national and international authorities, in the 72 hours preceding departure from the previous port.

d) If such evidence is not presented, passengers or crew members must be tested for Covid-19 by the regional health authorities. All passengers and crew members who had been tested must remain in the vessel until the test result is announced. Passengers and crew members will only be allowed to disembark if the Covid-19 test comes back negative.

e) Passengers and crew members who have been sailing for more than 14 days are exempt from being tested for Covid-19 and if there is not anyone with Covid-19 symptoms and/or fever. Such situation will always be verified by the regional health authorities.

These guidelines could be reversed if there is a risk to public health.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/08/todos-as-embarcacoes-podem-acostar-a-partir-de-hoje-menos-navios-de-cruzeiro-veja-quais-as-regras/

Alcohol ban

The Madeira Regional Government announced the consumption of alcoholic drinks is forbidden in outdoor areas accessible to the public and on the streets. Outdoor spaces, belonging to licensed restaurants, cafes and bars, are exempt from this ban and must close by 02h00.

All retail and service businesses, including those within shopping centres and including restaurants, bars and nightclubs must close by 02h00.

There is a ban on sale of alcoholic drinks in service/petrol stations, between 00h00 and 08h00.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98155/Esta_proibido_o_consumo_de_bebidas_alcoolicas_em_alguns_espacos_ao_ar_livre_na_Madeira

Possible bus services disruption this morning

Grupo Horários do Funchal (Madeira bus company) announced there could be some bus services disruptions between 08h30 and 13h30, due to a staff plenary meeting organised by Syndicate Nacional dos Motoristas (a trade union). All efforts will be made to minimise the disruption.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/08/grupo-horarios-do-funchal-alerta-para-possiveis-constrangimentos-amanha/

Possible water supply disruptions in Santa Maria Maior and Santa Luzia

The Municipality of Funchal informed that work will be carried out today on the water supply chain in Reservatório do Lombo, from 22h00 until 06h00 (following day). The following areas might be affected:

Estrada Luso Brasileira;

Rua Dr. Sena de Oliveira;

Rua Sidónio Pais;

Beco Sidónio Pais;

Travessa Sidónio Pais;

Travessa Quintino de Freitas;

Beco da Portada;

Zona do Bom Sucesso;

Zona da Rochinha;

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98160/Agua_pode_faltar_amanha_em_Santa_Maria_Maior_e_Santa_Luzia

 

Algarve

Employment Program for the Algarve to Launch this Month

The Minister of Labour, Ana Mendes Godinho, said today that the Government will launch this month a program of specific employment measures for the Algarve, one of the regions most affected by the impact of the covid-19.

The available data indicates that, in May, in this region, more than 27 thousand unemployed were registered in the employment centres, a number that represents an increase of 41% compared to February and 202% compared to the same month of the previous year.

The minister added that the program that is being designed for the Algarve will have specific measures that include professional training, employment support and cooperation with regional partners.

In the report “Employment prospects”, released on Tuesday, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) estimates that more than 40% of jobs in the Algarve may be destroyed due to the pandemic, as this is a region in that tourism has a significant weight.

Algarve team wins European competition for solutions to minimize Covid’s impact on tourism

A team from the Algarve who represented Portugal in a European competition for innovative and disruptive solutions in the field of Tourism have won with a project whose main idea is the creation of technological solutions that allow to minimize the impact of Covid-19 in the Tourism sector and enhance new business alternatives.

The winner, among the eight final projects, was the Algarve Safe Tourism project, presented by the team made up of Daniel Guerreiro, of the Algarve Regional Coordination and Development Commission (CCDR Algarve), Jorge Cabaço, of the Algarve Strategic Accelerator (ASA), Miguel Fernandes (President of Algarve Evolution and founder of Dengun) and Vanessa Nascimento (Vice President of Algarve Evolution), who developed a solution to facilitate tourist demand, based on advanced technologies (block chain and data collection) and geolocation, informed the CCDR .

According to a note from the CCDR, for three days, the two Algarve teams, representing the Digital Innovation Hub of the Algarve (IHL), powered by the Algarve STP (Systems and Technology Partnership), contributed, in a marathon, without interruption, in the implementation of solutions for two challenges that emerged during the Covid-19 pandemic: to develop technological solutions to minimize the economic impacts in the area of ​​Tourism and to propose new business ideas to make the sector more sustainable globally.

CAST (Creative Accelerator for Sustainable Tourism) is a collaborative project funded by the European Union, with the aim of developing a network of incubators, accelerators and technological start-ups, SMEs and financiers, with the aim of forming a European community committed to the promotion and sharing knowledge, the use of technology and collaboration across borders, for a more sustainable tourism sector.

Public Prosecution against order to pay one million Euros to family of victims of cliff fall in 2009

The Public Prosecutor has appealed against the sentence that ordered the Portuguese State to pay more than one million euros to the families of the five persons who died from the collapse of a cliff at Maria Luísa beach, in Albufeira, in 2009.

In the appeal to the Central Administrative Court of the South (TACS), to which the Lusa agency had access yesterday, the Public Ministry expresses “non-conformity” and asks for the “nullity” of the sentence of the Tax and Administrative Fiscal Court (TAF) of Loulé “for excess of pronunciation”, for having condemned the Portuguese State to pay the victims’ families“ amounts higher than those requested by the claimants”.

The Public Prosecutor’s Office (MP) also claims in the appeal that the TAF decision in Loulé contains “factual error of judgment” and did not consider “proven facts indicated in the defence, in the process and arising from the testimony of witnesses”, presented at trial and that “imposed a decision different from the defendant”.

“The MP considers that the decision rendered on the matter of the facts did not properly analyse the evidence, not having properly identified the facts that were not proven, nor specified, specifically, the decisive grounds for the court’s conviction, that is, it did not proceed to a critical analysis of the evidence, as prescribed”, argues the defence of the Portuguese State.

On May 27, the Loulé Tax and Administrative Court (TAF) ordered the State to pay more than one million euros to the families of the five killed for the collapse of a cliff at Maria Luísa beach, in Albufeira, in the district of Faro, in August 2009.

In the TAF sentence, Judge Patrícia Martins ordered the State to pay around one million and six thousand euros to two families and a survivor, the boyfriend of one of the fatal victims.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 8th July – 9th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

The Ponta Delgada Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCIPD) expressed concern yesterday about, “unexplained failures” in reporting the results of “Covid-19” screening tests.  In response, the Regional Secretary for Health Teresa Luciano says that thousands of tests have been carried out on passengers arriving in the Azores which is why there’s been a delay in issuing some results.  They should be available within 12 hours but some arriving passengers have had to wait two or three days, in ‘self-isolation’ in their accommodation, waiting for news.

The number of tests, carried out on passengers, entering the region between June the 15th and July the 4th, was 6,825.  2,328 ‘presented’ tests were completed outside the region and 4,497 were carried out at one of the five ports of entry in the ‘Archipelago’.

The Region has had 154 cases of infection with 6 ‘active’ cases, four on the island of São Miguel, one on the island of Terceira and one on the island of Flores.  Since the outbreak began on the 15th of March, 130 people have recovered, two have returned to mainland Portugal but sadly, 16 have died.

 

 Portugal Situation Report Wednesday 8th July 2020

Introduction

Good Morning Portugal. I am pleased to say that Tuesday was a much quieter day for us at Safe Communities, certainly compared to Monday.

The day, however, started as it left off from Monday, with the ANEPC incident dashboard on their website out of order. This meant throughout the day there was no information available on rural fires or indeed any other incidents, which may have taken place. Luckily there were no new major incidents. I have discussed this at a senior level with the ANEPC plus the fact that the failure was not communicated to the public.

There can always be technical failures, but when this does happen prompt and effective communication is vital. Last night a table showing the day’s incidents was produced by the ANEPC showing no major incidents and that all fires had be extinguished in the initial attack. As of 0800 hors this morning it has still not been repaired.

In our Algarve section of our morning report, we publish the details of the GNR enforcement action last weekend in Albufeira where the GNR handed out penalties to those mainly in “The Strip” area for disregarding the rules imposed due to the covid-19 pandemic. These included establishments operating after midnight, such as drinking alcohol on public roads for example. I have also seen videos of those mainly from overseas not wearing masks or respecting social distancing. This must not be allowed to continue as we will soon see more tourists in the area notorious for the problems of excessive alcohol every year, but exacerbated this year by Covid-19.

Safe Communities has taken steps to try to bring more attention to the problems of Albufeira and alcohol which are well known, one being the holding of a seminar in 2018 in the presence of the former Secretary of State for Internal Administration, Isabelle Oneto, to help bring about solutions. The answer I said then, and is the case now, is not for police to throw more of their valuable resources in reactive enforcement, but for far better control over the bar industry itself there.

This is a matter that should rest on the shoulders of the Mayor of Albufeira, José Carlos Rolo. In response to last weekends’ problems he told Lusa yesterday that the municipality will reinforce awareness actions among the owners of the catering and beverage establishments, alerting them to the mandatory compliance with DGS rules. Not a moment too late, actions that should have taken place when such establishments returned to operation last month.

We therefore remind people of the 20 people maximum gathering law. Large parties and gatherings similar to that in Albufeira are a sure way to spread the virus quickly. Please respect this for your own safety and if you are aware of any planned or see excessively large gatherings, call the police. As you see they will take action.

Finally a reminder that about 40 counties in seven districts in the north, center and Algarve are at maximum fire risk today, so please take all precautions to prevent rural fires and be familiar of actions to take should a fire occur.

Have another Very Hot and Safe Day

Headlines

Two GNR officers fight for life after a serious A1 accident

The GNR officers were in a patrol car when the accident occurred on the A1. Two GNR officers are in critical condition following a collision between a light vehicle and a patrol car. The accident occurred on the A1, in the North-South direction, between the Torres Novas junction and the Santarém Service area.

The two officers were reportedly motioning that area and were unexpectedly hit by a vehicle that crashed violently into the back of the patrol car. They were trapped and unconscious and when extracted they were both transported in critical condition to the Hospital de Santarém.

According to a Civil Protection source, the accident occurred at 11:36 am and the vehicle was travelling at 85.8km/hr. Three other people involved in the incident suffered serious injuries. According to a source from the Santarém District Relief Operations Command (CDOS), a total of 32 operatives were mobilized to the scene, supported by 13 vehicles, including the Santarém VMER and the Torres Novas SIV.

DGS Covid-19 Situation Report

This Tuesday Portugal recorded nine more deaths from covid-19, compared to Monday, and 287 more confirmed cases of infection, according to data from the Directorate-General for Health (DGS) released yesterday.

According to the daily epidemiological bulletin, the total number of deaths from covid-19 since the beginning of the pandemic is now 1,629 and the total number of confirmed cases is 44,129.

DGS registers 511 hospitalizations and 76 in intensive care.

Health

Covid-19: Politicians and experts meet today for the tenth time at Infarmed

The head of state, prime minister, president of the Assembly of the Republic and other officials meet today for the tenth time with experts to assess the epidemiological situation of covid-19 in Portugal, at Infarmed, in Lisbon.

These sessions, which start with technical presentations and then have a question phase, were an initiative of the Prime Minister, António Costa, with an objective of sharing information, and lately they have been focusing more on the Lisbon Metropolitan Area, where there are most new cases of infection with the new coronavirus have appeared.

PSD President Rui Rio considered in an interview with Porto Canal, released on Saturday, that these meetings at Infarmed “begin to have little use” and should “give an objective and short photograph” of the situation, followed by “technical advice”.

After the last meeting, two weeks ago, the President of the Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, who usually summarizes the conclusions to journalists, reported that several experts recommended the option of “concrete and specific measures for specific geographical areas”, rather than “generic measures”.

Covid-19: Number of children infected in a kindergarten in Caldas da Rainha rises to six

The number of children infected in a kindergarten in Caldas da Rainha has increased to six, the mayor said yesterday

“From the results known, there was a test that was positive for a child who attended the kindergarten and thus totals six infected children,” Fernando Tinta Ferreira, president of the Câmara das Caldas da Rainha, told Lusa.

As part of the outbreak originating in a kindergarten, there are still seven more infected people (two educators and a driver) and four family members of the children, according to the mayor. In addition to this outbreak there is another one detected at the Montepio Rainha D. Leonor home, in Caldas da Rainha, with a total of 26 infected people (23 users and three employees).

The Montepio Rainha D. Leonor home has 59 elderly people and employs 50 people. All users and employees, were tested on June 26 and most of them tested on the 3rd July for the second time, since there were “people who tested negative in the first test and after a few days they tested positive”, said Fernando Tinta Ferreira.

In the case of the kindergarten, “a few days ago a child appeared with symptoms, took the test and was found positive with covid-19”, which also led to the testing of all children and employees. Between Monday and today, the results of about 30 of the 40 tests performed were known, all with negative results, except for one child. “For now, there is no one hospitalized,” said the mayor, who is still waiting for the result of about a dozen tests.

Reguengos de Monsaraz outbreak update

The death of two more elderly women, 88 and 94 years old, users of the Reguengos de Monsaraz home, increased the number of deaths related to the covid-19 outbreak to 14 in the Municipality it wasl revealed today.

According to the communiqué of the Council and Civil Protection Authority of Reguengos de Monsaraz, with data on the epidemiological situation known by the end of Monday, the active cases of the covid-19 outbreak are now 136 (on Monday it was 141), because, although there is another person infected in the community, there are four more patients recovered.

Of the total number of active cases, 89 are at the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation Home (FMIVPS) – where the outbreak broke out on 18 June. Of these 68 are users 21 are employees, while the remaining 47 were infected in the community.

“Among the positive professionals, we note that everyone is recovering in their homes,” he added. The municipality of Reguengos de Monsaraz registers the biggest outbreak in the Alentejo of the disease caused by the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. The municipality announced that from the tests carried out nine have recovered in the municipality, three of whom are home professionals and six among the county’s inhabitants.

President of Doctors attributes issues with pandemic due to lack of resources

The recent increase in deaths, contagions and hospital admissions due to covid-19 in Portugal was due to the lack of means and less attention to safety rules by the population, according to the president of the Portuguese Doctors, Miguel Guimarães.

He left a warning for the harmful effects that new flaws in planning to face of a possible second wave of the disease on covid-19 patients, “but also on non-covid-19 patients”, who he says are being forgotten.

According to Miguel Guimarães, the ‘missteps’ recorded in the de-confinement are inseparable from a change in the “alert regarding the surveillance and inspection of what is happening”, regretting that security forces and city councils had not had “extra attention” demanding compliance with the rules.

“There are countries that have already reached zero cases per day and we can also reach them. This implies a great deal of work and resources that must be guaranteed to the professionals in the ‘front line’. The faster we solve this, the faster the economy starts to grow. It is essential to think that the pandemic is not over yet”, he said, while noting that the current situation “is not a second wave of the pandemic”.

Government initiatives to reduce risk of infection among fruit pickers

Inspection and coordination with municipalities, local entities and producers are the ways to minimize the risks of spreading covid-19 among the 30,000 temporary workers in the fruit industry, the government announced yesterday.

The good practice guide “which gives guidance to producers, but also to packers”, and which “must be followed in detail” during the fruit picking campaigns, was presented yesterday to mayors and regional entities by the Secretary of State for Parliamentary Affairs, Duarte Cordeiro, as coordinator of the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo Region in the context of combating the pandemic.

Economy

Brussels estimates 9.8% contraction for Portugal

The European Commission worsened its economic forecasts for Portugal this year in the face of Covid-19 shocks, now estimating a contraction of 9.8% of GDP, well above the previous projection of 6.8% and that of the Government, of 6, 9%.

In the interim summer forecasts released this Tuesday, the community executive revised downwards the already gloomy macroeconomic projections for the whole of the Eurozone and the EU as a whole, but is particularly pessimistic about Portugal, as it worsens the projection of recession by three percentage points, only partially offset in 2021 with a growth of 6.0% (in this case slightly more optimistic than the 5.8% anticipated in the spring).

The EC now expects a contraction in Portugal above the average for the euro area (-8.7%) and the EU (-8.3%), when two months ago it estimated it to be below, anticipating a fall in the Portuguese economy. 6.8%, against 7.7% in the single currency area and 7.6% in the 27 Member States as a whole.

“With confinement starting to decline in May, economic activity is slowly resuming, but for many companies, such as airlines and hotels, it is expected to remain well below the levels recorded before the pandemic for a long period. The GDP should therefore decline 9.8% in 2020, before recovering around 6% in 2021 “, points out the Commission, which also warns of risks mainly on the negative side,” due to the strong impact of foreign tourism “, sector “Where uncertainties in the medium term remain significant”.

António Costa will meet by videoconference with the Danish Prime Minister

The Prime Minister said today that he will soon meet, by videoconference, with his Danish counterpart, Mette Frederiksen, who heads one of the governments that has opposed the proposed recovery fund the European Commission.

António Costa spoke about this meeting at the joint press conference he gave with the Italian Prime Minister, Giuseppe Conte, in São Bento, which was followed by a working dinner.

Asked how his meeting with the Dutch Prime Minister, Mark Rutte, looks like next Monday in The Hague, he said that this will not be the only bilateral meeting he will have before the European Council on the 17th and 18th July in Brussels. In addition to Rutte, António Costa said that he will have a meeting by videoconference with his Danish colleague who belongs to the same political family of European Socialists and Social Democrats, but which has been opposed to the level of contributions foreseen in the proposal of the European Commission of Framework Multiannual Financial (2021/2027).

Denmark, like the Netherlands, Sweden and Austria, also opposes the proposal that the recovery fund, totalling € 750 billion, mainly because it contains € 500 billion in grants to Member States members most affected by the covid-19 pandemic.

Leisure

Cuba’s 87th Annual Fair cancelled due to Covid-19

The 87th Annual Fair held in Cuba, Alentejo, has been cancelled due to Covid-19. For 2021, the municipality already has a date set for the event: it will be from 2 to 5 September.

“After consulting the members of the municipal bodies and other partners in organizing the event”, the Cuban authority says that it decided to cancel this year’s Annual Fair of Cuba, “due to the uncertainty about the evolution of the pandemic caused by Covid-19”.

“The rules imposed by the Directorate-General for Health to carry out outdoor initiatives would not allow full use by the community, and especially by business people, of the opportunities generated by what is the biggest event promoted by the municipality and which annually attracts thousands of visitors stressed the municipality in a statement.

In this sense, and “based on the concern with safeguarding public health, in order to guarantee safety and avoid risks of contagion for visitors, exhibitors, municipal employees and other collaborators, it was a consensual understanding that the 87th event should not be held, with the promise of its return with the usual quality to which it has already become accustomed”, the press note also stresses.

Other health issues

Bubonic plague in China not a high risk: WHO

Apparent outbreak of ‘Black Death’ in China being ‘well managed’ and is not a high risk, says the health body.

An apparent outbreak of bubonic plague in China is being “well managed” and is not considered to represent a high risk, a World Health Organization (WHO) official has said. Local authorities in the city of Bayannur in the Chinese region of Inner Mongolia issued a warning on Sunday, one day after a hospital reported a case of suspected bubonic plague.

It followed four reported cases of plague in people there last November, including two of pneumonic plague, a deadlier variant. “We are monitoring the outbreaks in China, we are watching that closely and in partnership with the Chinese authorities and Mongolian authorities,” WHO spokeswoman Margaret Harris told a United Nations press briefing in Geneva on Tuesday.

“We are looking at the case numbers in China. It’s being well managed.” “Bubonic plague has been with us and is always with us, for centuries,” she said, adding, “At the moment we are not … considering it high-risk.”

The UN health agency said it was notified by China on Monday of a case of bubonic plague in Inner Mongolia. “Plague is rare, typically found in selected geographical areas across the globe where it is still endemic,” the agency said, adding that sporadic cases of plague have been reported in China over the last 10 years.

“Bubonic plague is the most common form and is transmitted between animals and humans through the bite of infected fleas and direct contact with carcases of infected small animals. It is not easily transmitted between people.” The man infected in Inner Mongolia was in stable condition at a hospital in Bayannur, the city health commission said in a statement.

 Other news

President of the Republic visits the Security Services

The President of the Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, yesterday visited the Information System of the Portuguese Republic (SIRP), at Fort D. Carlos I, in Lisbon, it was announced.

According to a statement published on the website of the Presidency of the Republic, the visit of the head of state to SIRP coincides with the celebration of the 35th anniversary of the Security Information Service and the 25th anniversary of the Strategic Information Service of Defence. Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa’s visit was accompanied by the directors of these two services, Adélio Neiva da Cruz and Carlos Lopes Pires, respectively.

Regional Reports

Madeira Situation Report by Daniel Fernandes

Covid-19 update

There were no new Covid-19 cases yesterday. The number of cases remains 95, with 90 recoveries and 5 active cases. All 5 active cases were discovered as a result of checks at Funchal Airport. All patients are in isolation in a designated hotel or in their own homes and have not required hospital treatment so far.

There are 2,520 people under active monitoring and 3,003 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of Monday, there had been 1,550 suspected cases.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal Airport, 2,962 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 18h00). Overall, 26,786 samples have been processed in the Madeira Autonomous Region.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 62 calls from Monday to Tuesday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,308. The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,572 calls, with 153 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/07/hoje-nao-ha-novos-casos-de-covid-19-ram-mantem-5-casos-activos/

Return of charter flights to Jersey

Charter flights between Funchal and Jersey resumed yesterday, after being suspended for several months due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

This flight will also take place on the 14th, 21st, 28th and 30th of July. Additionally, this flight will take place on the 4th, 11th, 13th, 18th, 25th and 27th of August,

A one-way flight costs €299 while a return flight cost €599 (applicable to adults and children – taxes included). Bookings can be made by phone (291 206 564) or by email (helena.ferreira@intertours.com.pt). It is also possible to visit the office in Largo do Phelps 18 (next to Rua Fernão d’Ornelas), from Monday to Friday (10h30-13h00 & 14h30-17h30).

The video on the following website shows passengers arriving from Jersey and the two different lanes for passengers. The lane on the left is for passengers who will be tested on arrival while the lane on the right is for passengers who have evidence of Covid-19 test carried out 72h before the flight.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98068/Chegou_o_primeiro_voo_de_Jersey_com_cerca_de_uma_centena_de_passageiros_com_video

https://www.dnoticias.pt/2020/7/6/56522-voos-charter-para-jersey-estao-de-volta

Madeira Promotion Bureau video showing Madeira is a safe destination

Madeira Promotion Bureau (Associação de Promoção da Madeira – APM) published a video showing that “Madeira and Porto are already open to visitors”. The one-minute long shows all the safety procedures that were adopted at the Region’s airports and the island’s beautiful landscapes.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/98033/Associacao_de_Promocao_da_Madeira_lanca_video_para_mostrar_que_a_Regiao_e_segura

Power cut

Empresa de Electricidade da Madeira (Madeira power supplier) announced there will be power cuts in Funchal in the following days, due to planned work on the electricity supply network. The following areas will be affected:

9th July – 09h00 to 10h30

  • Estrada da Camacha (numbers 6 to 163)
  • Estrada do Aeroporto (number 39)
  • Rua Fonte das Moças (numbers 4 to 22)
  • Vereda Fonte das Moças

10th July – 09h00 to 12h00

  • Rua Levada dos Barreiros
  • Caminho da Levada dos Barreiros (numbers 13 to 32)

However, power could be restored during the time frame mentioned above. So, for safety purposes, it should be assumed that there will be power at any time during this period of time. If necessary, customers can contact the free Customer Support Service (Serviço de Apoio ao Cliente): 800 221 187.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/08/publicidade-o-fornecimento-de-energia-sera-interrompido-nos-dias-horas-e-locais-abaixo-indicados-anuncio-47-2020/

 

Algarve

GNR Enforcement action in Albufeira

The National Republican Guard (GNR) issued, on Sunday, dozens of administrative fines regarding offences committed by establishments and people in Albufeira, who disregarded the rules imposed due to the pandemic of the covid-19, according to the GNR.

According to the source, GNR was called on Sunday night to disperse hundreds of people of various nationalities who were concentrated on the public road and consuming alcoholic beverages on Rua da Oura – known as “The Strip” in Albufeira – in default the law and recommendations of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS).

“Several administrative offenses were handed out to dozens of people for the consumption of alcoholic beverages and to the owners of establishments that operated outside legally authorized hours,” he said. According to the source, “the infractions detected in that area have been daily”, namely the disregard for the rules imposed due to the covid-19 pandemic, “not only establishments operating after midnight, such as drinking alcohol on public roads ”.

The same source added that the GNR has reinforced actions to raise awareness among people and owners of establishments about the risks that people gather in this pandemic period, clarifying the mandatory use of masks in closed spaces and the distance between them safety.

“Despite the daily reinforcement of awareness-raising actions, people still do not respect the indications,” he said.

For his part, the Mayor of Albufeira, José Carlos Rolo, told Lusa that the municipality will reinforce awareness actions among the owners of the catering and beverage establishments, alerting them to the mandatory compliance with DGS rules.

“As of Wednesday, we will not only have meetings with the owners, but we will have a van circulating on the streets with sound information, where the measures in force in Portugal are indicated,” he said. According to José Carlos Rolo, the abnormal concentrations of people detected in the last few days at Rua da Oura, “have been, above all, young foreigners who are on finalists’ trips, mostly Dutch”.

“I assume that the rules and recommendations in the Netherlands are different from those in force in Portugal and that young people do not wear masks and do not respect the rules of distance, due to lack of knowledge”, he concluded. According to the mayor, the application and enforcement of the rules is being coordinated between the municipality and the GNR, “an entity that has been a judge when it detects non-compliance, namely during the opening hours of the establishments”.

Covid-19: It is necessary to “look forward and fight” for Algarve tourism

The President of the Republic said this Monday, in the Algarve, that it is necessary to “look ahead and fight” for tourism in the region to overcome the losses caused by the exclusion of Portugal from the air corridor with the United Kingdom.

“It is evident that everything is important, now we have to look ahead and we have to fight, first, for tourism that comes from other interesting and important origins, that may come and that will define positions in the coming days. And then the British Government itself said it would rethink in July, let’s see what can be done about this matter”, said Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa.

The head of state spoke to journalists in Monte Gordo, Vila Real de Santo António, before a dinner with the mayors of the Algarve, and representatives of the Tourism Region and tourism business associations.

“It is necessary to pull through the Algarve fast, so that we can produce effects later this year” in tourism, defended Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, who wanted to hear the mayors and tourism representatives to try to help the Algarve to overcome the difficulties caused by the covid pandemic -19 and the UK’s decision to force the British to quarantine 14 days on arrival from Portugal.

RTA reminds the Portuguese (and not only) that “Algarve feels good”

“The Algarve looks good on you”. This is how the Algarve Tourism Region appeals to the Portuguese (and not only), to choose the region to spend their holidays.

The new campaign, launched last Saturday, shows Algarve landscapes, from the coast to the interior, after the one that was “a break, an interval in our lives”.

Now, it is highlighted in the video description, “we are back to discover how well this Algarve is doing. The Algarve of sun, sea, gastronomy, culture, nature and many other inspirations. An Algarve that is yours, that is ours. Come, the Algarve is fine for you!”

According to the YouTube channel of the Algarve Tourism Region, the promotional campaign for Turismo do Algarve aims to “motivate not only national tourists, but also foreigners, to enjoy the summer 2020 vacation in the region, reinforcing confidence in the brand Algarve and, consequently, the notoriety of the main tourist destination in the country”.

This motivational film “is starring one of the most successful international travel influencers couples today, Raquel and Miguel, two young Portuguese people who are passionate about travel… and the Algarve, where they wanted to meet each other and love had happened at first View”.

View here:   https://youtu.be/cUW2RT06-ys

Azores

Situation Report Azores 7th July – 8th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

The Regional Health Service of the Azores will be reinforced this year with 579 new professionals, from all sectors, was announced today by the regional secretary of Health.

Teresa Machado Luciano said that this year “179 professionals have already been hired” and that 400 more staff from different areas will be hired later this year, including doctors, nurses, senior diagnostic and therapeutic technicians, technical assistants, psychologists, senior technicians and operational assistants “.

The Regional Health Authority announced that the 888 tests carried out at the two reference laboratories in the Region in the past 24 hours did not reveal new positive cases of Covid-19 So, the Region maintains a total of 154 cases of infection with six ‘active’ cases, four on the island of São Miguel, one on the island of Terceira and one on the island of Flores.  Since the outbreak began on the 15th of March, 130 people have recovered, two have returned to mainland Portugal but sadly, 16 have died.

 

Portugal Situation Report Monday 7th July

Introduction

About 6 weeks ago I wrote an article for the Algarve Residents entitled “Avoiding the Perfect Storm” whereby the same emergency services were having to deal with Covid-19 and major rural fire outbreaks on a national level.

A week later this nearly came about in the Algarve whereby we had the first Major Incident fire of the year in Aljezur/Vila do Bispo and at the same time the illegal party in Lagos which went onto affect over 100 people with Covid-19

Well yesterday we at Safe Communities faced our own “Perfect Storm” having to deal with a number of challenges simultaneously: namely the monitoring of the rural fire in São Marcos da Serra in the Algarve, translation and the dissemination of the Fire warning issued by the ANEPC and the translation and dissemination of the new Decree Law published yesterday concerning Temperature checks and testing procedures for persons arriving at ANA airports in Portugal, which has come into immediate effect. All with a space of 3 hours yesterday evening.

I mention these to emphasize our repeated message by asking people politely not to enter into personal opinions or lengthy debates on our Facebook page, as this puts more pressure on our admins to reply to real questions and makes it more difficult for people to find the information they need. It also means that people end up making the same points that have already been answered. Please therefore fully read the post, and any links before asking the question. We thank people however, for their factual responses and for updates from local knowledge in respect of the fire.

Passengers arriving at airports from certain countries including the USA, Portuguese speaking African countries and others determined by DGS, nearly all outside of Europe, will be required to produce evidence of a negative test results from Covid-19. Please check with your airline concerned as they are legally accountable should they allow the boarding of passengers without a declaration.

Regarding the second issue of Notifications to the Population, these are issued by the ANEPC only when there is a potential risk to life and property.  Safe Communities officially provides urgent translations of these into English which are sent to the ANEPC usually within one hour and are then posted by the ANEPC and Safe Communities on our websites and the SCP Facebook page. If you see these please take note, follow the advice and kindly share.

On this point, we are in liaison with the ANEPC this morning as their incident page on their website has encountered problems and is not showing information. This does not affect their internal systems however.

Regarding the fire at São Marcos da Serra, in the Algarve we are monitoring this as much as we can but until the ANEPC site is repaired there will unlikely be any figures regarding deployment of resources or status of the fire. We will bring you what news we can.

Despite the law being very clear on social gatherings, yesterday it was reported that GNR ended an illegal party with about 300 people and in disregard for the rules for preventing the spread of covid-19, held in the early hours of Saturday in Fernão Ferro, in the municipality of Seixal, it was announced today.

In a second incident reported on Monday, the GNR had to order the closure of establishments on The Strip Rua da Oura, in Albufeira, and to disperse hundreds of people on Sunday night. The situation was on the verge of  being uncontrolled when hundreds of young Dutch people, on trips following their finals, huddled in two bars (which have snack bar licences), without masks or safe distancing.

This not only puts the safety of those present at risk but also the possibility of transmission to their family and friends, as was the case with the illegal party in Lagos in June. It also puts the GNR at risk as in this case two detachments of the Intervention unit had to be deployed to break up the gathering. We hope that those who organised and promoted the event, as well as those who attended, will be charged accordingly and we will be speaking to the GNR concerning this.

So as you see there is never a dull moment in our work at Safe Communities, unfortunately often having to deal with incidents caused by humans that can be avoided.

On that note please have a Safe Day!

 

Headlines

Reassessment of UK quarantine measures to take place on 27th July

The reassessment of the list of countries exempted from quarantine on arrival in the United Kingdom, from which Portugal was excluded due to the covid-19 outbreaks, will take place on July 27, reveals Transport Minister Grant Shapps.

“The Government will maintain the requirements and exemptions established in the regulations under analysis. The next revision of the regulations will be made on the July 27, 2020”, he said, in a written statement sent to Parliament.

The British Government published last Friday a list of 59 countries and territories, including Germany, Australia, Spain, France, Greece or Macau, whose travellers no longer have to be in isolation for 14 days on arrival in the United Kingdom from July 10.

Foreign Minister Santos Silva working on solutions regarding Portugal’s exclusion from travel corridor

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, said yesterday that “it does not make sense” for the United Kingdom to consider “Madeira and Azores destinations safe” and not to exempt tourists from quarantine

Augusto Santos Silva considered this Monday that “it does not make sense” for the United Kingdom to consider the Azores and Madeira safe destinations and not to exempt tourists from quarantine, but admitted that the British limitations have a limited impact.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, who answered questions from journalists about the exclusion of Portugal from the British list of safe tourist destinations announced on Friday, assured that the Government is “working on solutions” and “at all levels”.

Augusto Santos Silva, who was speaking on the sidelines of a conference at the Assembly of the Republic on “The strategic impact of the covid-19 pandemic in the international environment”, made a point of countering the criticisms that were made of him for having reacted, on Friday – when he considered the London decision “absurd”, “wrong” and “disappointing” – stating “that it will not seem strange to anyone that the Portuguese Foreign Minister is fighting for Portugal’s interests”.

“It’s just what I vowed to do when I took office,” he said.

Asked about the situation in the Azores and Madeira, which London considered safe destinations, but which nevertheless continues to impose quarantine on travellers from those archipelagos on their return to the United Kingdom, Santos Silva considered that “it does not make sense that the British authorities consider Madeira and the Azores destinations safe and do not remove the consequence that seems logical “.

Regarding ways of circumventing the limitations imposed on the British who want to visit the Portuguese mainland, for example part of the trip by car, the minister stressed that “the State is not a substitute for citizens’ decisions”, but admitted that the restrictions end up being ineffective.

“We are not in favour of measures such as quarantine being effective measures, for reasons that are moreover simple and logical. Just think that today whoever went directly from Lisbon airport to London airport would be subject to a duty of self-isolation to arrival, but if I stopped at another European airport I would no longer have that duty “, he explained. Work continues with the British authorities to “review their decisions”

“So these measures have a relatively limited impact, particularly in comparison with the measures that seem to us to have an impact: the rules of respiratory etiquette, the rules of social distance, the rules of personal protection and others in circumstances where that distance is more difficult “, he exemplified. The minister stressed, however, that work is continuing with the British authorities, so that they have “all the information necessary for them to review their decisions”.

This work is based, he insisted, on the “need to assess the epidemiological situation on the basis of the available indicators that allow a picture of that situation, and not only on the basis of a single indicator”, but also to understand “the concerns of the British authorities and see how answer them “.

DGS Covid-19 Situation

This Monday, Portugal registers six more deaths associated with the covid-19 and 232 new cases of infection, 195 of whom were in the region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley. There are 149 more patients recovered. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Portugal has accounted for 1620 deaths from covid-19 and 44,129 cases of infection, according to the daily bulletin released by tDGS

Of the 232 new cases of infection confirmed since Sunday, 195 are in the region of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, which represents 84.1% of the total of new cases. “There is stability with a slight downward trend,” stated the Secretary of State for Health, António Lacerda Sales, at a press conference. “It is a sign of hope”.

The six new deaths recorded in this Monday’s bulletin are a man in the 50-59 age group; two men between 60-69 years old and two men and a woman over 80 years old. They occurred in the North (one), Lisbon and Tagus Valley (three) and Alentejo (two). There are 513 people hospitalised (nine more) and 74 in intensive care (one more). Health authorities have 31,485 people under surveillance.

Health

40 High School Students in Quarantine

Around 40 students from the Polytechnic and University Higher Education Cooperative (CESPU), from Gandra, Paredes, Porto district, were placed in quarantine after it became known that they had been in contact with a colleague who tested positive for covid-19.

The coordinator of CESPU’s Marketing and Public Relations Office, Miguel Martins, explained today that the French student, who did not enter the premises of that higher education establishment, tested inconclusive in a first screening for the new coronavirus and positive in a second. All colleagues who contacted her are asymptomatic, but will be tested on Thursday, with the results expected to be known on Friday or early next week.

“Until then they are in prophylactic isolation,” said the official.

Non-Portuguese and Foreigners without Residence Have to Pay for Test

Non-Portuguese or foreign citizens without residence in Portugal who do not have a negative test on covid-19 on arrival must do so at the airport and pay, and the company that transported them will have fines of 1,000 euros / passenger. This applies to those only from restricted countries determined by the DGS (outside of Europe), the USA and from African Portuguese speaking countries including Brazil.

Non-nationals or foreigners without residence in Portugal will not be allowed to enter Portugal if they do not already bring proof of negative test and refuse to do so at the airport. In this case, it will be the company that transported them to be responsible for paying for their return.

In addition, airlines, after check-in, must inform the airport of arrival of the number of passengers who have boarded without proof of having performed the RT-PCR molecular test. Companies that violate the prohibition of not boarding passengers that are not Portuguese or residing in Portugal, without tests with negative results, will be subject to a fine of 1,000 euros per passenger without RT-PCR molecular test.

Reguengos de Monsaraz outbreak update

The number of active cases in the covid-19 outbreak in Reguengos de Monsaraz reached 141 yesterday, despite the detection of three new cases, two in the community and one in a home employee, informed the Alentejo municipality today.

Maintaining active cases is explained by three new cases cured, two among employees of the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation (FMIVPS) home and one in the community, which increases the number of cases cured in the outbreak detected on June 18 to five. Among the active cases, 91 are directly related to the FMIVPS home, distributed between 70 users (10 deaths) and 21 employees (three cases cured and one death).

Ricardo Jorge Institute Preparing New Serological Studies

The National Institute of Health Doctor Ricardo Jorge (Insa) is preparing three new studies on covid-19 immunity, dedicated to people infected with the new coronavirus, health professionals and mothers and newborns.

The three studies that are currently on the table will start from the preliminary results in the first serological survey that should be known in July. Looking at patients infected with the new coronavirus, the aim of Insa, according to Fernando Almeida, is to understand the level of antibodies and the level of immunization resulting from the disease, and in the case of pregnant women and newborns, to understand if a mother who has infected state may or may not transmit antibodies to the baby.

DGS ensures that the data in Portugal is reliable

The Director-General of Health guaranteed yesterday that the data on the number of cases of covid-19 in Portugal is reliable, noting that the information in the daily bulletins is “as close as possible to reality”.

“It has nothing to do with hiding cases. The level of cases reported at national level is the number of which we are aware”, assured Graça Freitas at the regular press conference on the pandemic in Portugal, where he was asked about doubts about the data in the daily bulletins.

The director-general of Health stressed that the total number of confirmed cases provided daily to the country “is reliable” and that in recent months it has improved in the way “it is extracted compiled and quickly transmitted to all Portuguese and internationally”. Graça Freitas maintained that the “adjustments to be made” are not in relation to the total number of cases, but in relation to the municipalities.

Covid-19: New cases and active infections decreasing in five AML counties – Government

New cases and active infections are decreasing in the five counties in the Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon that inspire more concern in the context of the covid-19 pandemic, but there is no reason to “relax” , said the regional coordinator today.

“The number of active cases has been decreasing. There is also a slight decrease in Amadora and the number of new cases has also decreased slightly in Amadora and also in the five counties”, said the regional coordinator of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo in the fight against the pandemic, Duarte Cordeiro, referring to the fact that comparison between the last seven days and the previous week.

The Secretary of State for Parliamentary Affairs also spoke to journalists after the meeting on the work program of multidisciplinary teams created in the context of combating covid-19 in the municipality of Amadora, Lisbon district, which took place at the Integrated Municipal Operations Center.

The Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon has been in a state of contingency since July 1 and 19 parishes in the municipalities of Lisbon, Sintra, Amadora, Odivelas and Loures continued in a state of calamity. The rest of the country went on alert on that date, the lowest level of intervention foreseen in the Basic Civil Protection Act.

Duarte Cordeiro stressed, however, that the data presented “always needs some caution in its assessment and prudence in the conclusions it reveals”, also stressing that these numbers should not deserve “any kind of self-satisfaction that means relaxing”. The region of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo registered 77% of new covid-19 infections on Sunday, with 254 of the 328 new cases recorded by the Directorate-General for Health (DGS), which did not update the total distribution of cases per municipality.

Enforcement

GNR break up an illegal party with around 300 present

GNR ended an illegal party with about 300 people and in disregard for the rules for preventing the spread of covid-19, held in the early hours of Saturday in Fernão Ferro, in the municipality of Seixal, it was announced today.

The Commander of the Territorial Detachment of Almada, captain Luís Maciel, was alerted to the holding of a party with a large number of people in a house in the locality of Quinta da Lobateira, in Fernão Ferro, GNR were deployed and found that it was an illegal party and in disregard for safety rules for the prevention of the covid-19 pandemic.

“Given the size of the gathering the initial GNR response was reinforced by a Detachment of the Intervention unit (DI) as well as Intervention Unit (UI) of Almada , for a more muscular presence ”, said Luís Maciel.

“We identified the owner of the property, as well as a French citizen, who rented the house and then sublet it to another Portuguese individual, who will have been the promoter of the event,” he said. “The owner of the property informed us that the rental contract was for a party with a maximum number of ten people, adding that he would file a criminal complaint for abuse of trust and for the damage caused [to the house],” he added.

Questioned by the Lusa agency, Luís Maciel stated that “it was impossible to identify all the participants in the party”, but admitted that “some of them may be identified through the registration of the vehicles that were parked on the spot”.

The Commander of the Territorial Detachment of Almada also stated that the GNR prepared the respective administrative offense report to the promoters of the event. “The administrative offense record will go to the General Secretariat of the Ministry of Internal Administration, for instruction on the administrative offense”, he concluded.

Region Reports

Madeira by Daniel Fernandes

Covid-19 update

There were 2 new Covid-19 cases. Both cases were identified on Sunday as a result of Covid-19 checks at Funchal Airport. The infected passengers are not related to each other and were tested at the airport. They are currently in isolation, one in a residence in the Municipality of Calheta and the other in a residence in the Municipality of Machico. An epidemiological investigation is underway.

The number of cases is now 95, with 90 recoveries and 5 active cases. All 5 active cases were discovered as a result of checks at Funchal Airport. All patients are in isolation in a designated hotel or in their own homes and have not required hospital treatment so far.

There are 2,108 people under active monitoring and 3,001 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of Sunday, there had been 1,550 suspected cases, 1,457 of which had come back negative.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal Airport, 2,580 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 18h00). Overall, 25,832 samples have been processed in the Madeira Autonomous Region.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 40 calls from Sunday to Monday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,246. The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,563 calls, with 153 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/06/mais-dois-infectados-com-covid-19-na-ram-o-total-e-agora-de-cinco-pessoas/

Portuguese President promised to speak to the British Ambassador

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, the Portuguese President, assured Miguel Albuquerque (President of the Madeira Regional Government) that he will mention the particularities of Madeira and Porto Santo when he hosts Chris Sainty, the British Ambassador, at the President’s official residence.

This is one of the steps the Portuguese President will take in order to explain to the British Government the current situation in the Madeira Autonomous Region, as a safe destination. The aim is for Madeira to be able to host British tourists without them having to quarantine for 14 days after their return to the UK. Miguel Albuquerque reminded that British Airways is planning to resume flights to Madeira on the 16th of July while Jet2 is planning to do so on the 20th of July, which means there is still “some time left to address this issue”.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/06/mais-dois-infectados-com-covid-19-na-ram-o-total-e-agora-de-cinco-pessoas/

Continente stores awarded “Covid Safe” seal

Madeira’s Continente stores were awarded a “Covid Safe” seal by APCER. Continente is the first food retailer in Portugal to be awarded this certification, after an evaluation by APCER that certified all Continente, Continente Modelo and Continente Bom Dia stores are following the official guidelines to control the Covid-19 pandemic. The “Covid Safe” seal is awarded to organisations that comply with the sanitary and labour authorities’ guidelines on health and safety in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic — Directorate-General of Health (DGS), Working Conditions Authority (ACT) and International Labour Organisation (OIT).

The following Continente stores received the “Covid Safe” seal: Continente Modelo Machico Centro, Continente Modelo Santana, Continente Modelo Machico, Continente Modelo Camacha Shopping, Continente Modelo Caniço, Continente Modelo Cancela, Continente Modelo Seminário, Continente Modelo Viveiros, Continente Modelo Santo António, Continente Modelo São Martinho, Continente Modelo Madeira Shopping, Continente Modelo Estreito Câmara de Lobos, Continente Modelo Câmara de Lobos, Continente Modelo Ribeira Brava Meia Légua, Continente Modelo Ribeira Brava Centro.

The independent auditing process on Continente, Continente Modelo and Continente Bom Dia stores evaluated the implementation of procedures and the company’s practices, based on official guidelines and taking into account more than 300 assessment criteria.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/06/lojas-continente-da-madeira-certificadas-com-selo-covid-safe-pela-apcer/

4 cruise ships scheduled to dock in September

Several cruise ships are scheduled to dock in Madeira in September. And about 50 cruise ships are scheduled to dock in Madeira in October. These dockings are scheduled but cannot be guaranteed.

Hebridean Sky is scheduled to be the first cruise ship to dock in Funchal on the 18th of September at 07h00 and to depart on the same day at 23h00.

Amadea is scheduled to dock in Porto Santo on the 25th of September at 08h00. The same cruise ship is scheduled to dock in Funchal on the 26th of September at 07h00 and to depart towards Malaga at 14h00.

Costa Favolosa is scheduled to dock on the same day at 08h00 and to depart at 17h00.

Silver Spirit is scheduled to dock on the 27th of September and to depart on the 28th of September.

Although these cruise ships are scheduled to dock in Madeira, there is a lack of definitive confirmation. Many cruise ship docking that had been scheduled ended up being cancelled.

Madeira has not hosted any cruise ships since March. It has occasionally hosted yachts that dock for a short stay to restock supplies. The Port of Funchal is mainly used for cruise ship stopovers and rarely for boarding.

Nowadays, the Covid-19 pandemic is serious and looks likely to remain among us for some time. This is another barrier to potential travellers. About 50 members of staff are working daily at the airport to carry out health checks on passengers.

It is speculated that cruise ship customers will have to present evidence of a Covid-19 test before departure. Madeira is considering introducing rapid Covid-19 tests for passengers disembarking. Another solution would be temperature measuring and the use of a disinfection tunnel, a very expensive machine as a minimum of 3 tunnels would be required, 2 for the south dock and another for the north dock. All this apparatus must be set up by the 18th of September, the day the Hebridean Sky is scheduled to dock.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/06/porto-do-funchal-4-barcos-agendados-para-setembro/

 

Algarve

GNR Closes establishments in The Strip Albufeira

GNR had to order the closure of establishments on The Strip Rua da Oura, in Albufeira, and to disperse hundreds of people on Sunday night.

The situation was on the verge of uncontrolled when hundreds of young Dutch people, on trips following their finals, huddled in two bars, without masks or safe distancing. It was the owner of one of the establishments to who gave the alert. In an interview with SIC, he says he is afraid to open the doors again and the situation will repeat itself.

The Albufeira Chamber wants defined rules for the opening of bars, in order to make it possible for customers to be dispersed. Bars and clubs cannot open, but if they have a snack bar license, they can receive customers until 23:00.

This Monday, more than 2,000 young Dutch people were expected to arrive in Albufeira.

Aljezur first cases

The Aljezur City Council confirmed yesterday the first two positive cases of covid-19 in the municipality, according to a statement released by the municipality on the Facebook page.

“These two cases are identified, they are a couple and are duly monitored by Public Health and local authorities”, says the municipality. The origin of these two cases is the same as that of the Monchique outbreak and “all security measures are being monitored and taken to contain contagion”.

The municipality of Aljezur was one of the only municipalities in the Algarve that still had no cases of covid-19 registered since the beginning of the pandemic, together with Alcoutim and Vila do Bispo.

Albufeira reinforces assistance to bathers in non-concession areas

The Municipality of Albufeira reinforced the means of assistance to bathers in non-concession areas of the municipality, through a vessel, lifeguards and a 4 × 4 vehicle, the municipality announced.

From the beginning of the month until the end of September, several technicians from the Association of Swimmers of Albufeira (ANSA) are available for this mission and with the capacity to use the oxygen therapy device, the communication system and radio with loud voice to communicate at a distance.

This action started on July 1, when the Blue Flag was raised at the Marina of Albufeira and an emergency number was created in a bathing context, which is 915951936.

According to the responsible councillor, Rogério Neto, “this mission guarantees compliance with Decree-Law no. 24/2020, regarding access, occupation and use of bathing beaches in the context of the pandemic of the covid-19 disease, for the time 2020. Lifeguards are empowered, even with pedagogical functions, to ensure compliance with physical and social distance, as well as the use of personal protective equipment”.

In a statement, the Mayor of Albufeira, José Carlos Rolo, “the bases are created for a project that is intended to be broadened, in order to respond to the activity that is recorded throughout the year in the municipality”. “The municipality of Albufeira guarantees good assistance to all beaches in the municipality, through the use of communications and aquatic rescue equipment, in addition to reinforcing patrolling and raising awareness of good practices for bathing on Albufeira’s beaches”, concluded the mayor.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 5th July – 6th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

The Regional Health Executive has said, that in the last 24 hours, 612 tests were carried out in the two reference laboratories in the Region, with no new cases registered.

So, the Region has a total of 154 cases of infection by the new SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, which causes COVID-19 disease, with six currently active positive cases, four on the island of São Miguel, one on the island of Terceira and one on the island of Flores

 

Portugal Situation Report Monday 6th July

Introduction

I would like to start by thanking everyone for promoting the spirit of Positive Sunday which we outlined in the Introduction to the morning report yesterday.

Saturday and Sunday could not have been more different and in my mind it shows the positive spirit of the overwhelming majority of residents here on Portugal both Portuguese and foreigners. Our Facebook page is almost equally shared between the Portuguese population and us as foreigners, who have the privilege to live in this lovely and welcoming country.

What we saw yesterday as on previous occasions were many foreigners saying they are “proud” to live in Portugal and I could not agree more.

So our message is that our “positive Sunday” will become a positive week – let’s hope so.

In reviewing comments it is obvious that some people can be heavily influenced by what they read in the “tabloid headlines” and on social media groups, where there is no admin control whatsoever, which unfortunately in respect of the latter, is prevalent in the Algarve. Personally I suggest avoid wasting time visiting such groups and focus on the facts, which we try our best to identify and share with you.

Figures, figures and figures! One of the issues that arose yesterday was the issue of the transparency of the reporting of statistics of confirmed cases of Covid 19, both here and overseas.

Three days ago in Portugal the Director General of health reported 34 outbreaks throughout the country the main focus being certain parts of Lisbon – others being much smaller. Not what we wanted to hear, but she was clear and unambiguous.

In contrast however, in Spain the same day, when the Director of the director of the Health Ministry’s Coordination Center for Health Alerts (CCAES) was questioned on the situation in Madrid. There was confusion in that, although the number being diagnosed had been increasing and was only second to Catalonia, there had been no reported “outbreaks of the disease”. The response was “I think that we are doing a very good job of detecting cases but we know that we are not detecting 100% of them”.

I use this example as a simple illustration that figures on their own do not always tell the whole story especially when comparing one country to another. There are many factors to take into account which makes it very difficult. We commend Portugal for its transparency and admission when mistakes have been made (for instance DGS revealed yesterday) that a testing laboratory had failed to register in the DGS system test results for a period of three days” – this is now being rectified.

The issue of statistics is exacerbated by the lack of international standardisation on the analysis of risk in respect of travel advice and resulting restrictions are concerned. For example the Netherlands has placed an “amber” travel advice restriction recommendation on the greater Porto area of Portugal, for no apparent reason we can see and Belgium yesterday increased from Green to Amber its travel advice to Spain, whereas certain other countries (also operating traffic light systems) have not done so. This will make it very difficult travellers in the coming months.

With that have a Safe Day and again a reminder to take care during this very hot weather.

Covid-19 DGS Situation report

Portugal recorded nine deaths and 328 new cases of covid-19 infection from Saturday to Sunday. Altogether, there are 43,897 confirmed cases since the beginning of the pandemic, in March, and 1614 deaths.

The increase in confirmed cases was below the daily average of 351 cases over the last 5 days. All mainland regions of the country and Madeira (one case) registered new cases, with the majority of infections being registered in Lisbon in Vale do Tejo, with 254 infections out of the 328 total since Saturday.

According to the daily bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health, the number of hospitalized patients increased by 15 to 504, of whom 73 are in intensive care units, the same number as yesterday. The North region increased the number of patients with covid-19 by 25 cases. A further 245 people have recovered from the disease

The bulletin reiterates that there are 200 cases still to be included in the total, referring to tests carried out by a laboratory that on three days this week did not register them in the system for this purpose, and their distribution is still being analysed by the health authorities.

Health

Paços de Ferreira, Porto school closed after outbreaks of covid-19

There are two sources of contamination of the new coronavirus in the municipality of Paços de Ferreira, Porto District. One of them, with six confirmed cases, was identified at the Basic School No. 2 (Centro Escolar de Paços de Ferreira) and another at a company in the municipality, with three positive cases.

The first outbreak was identified in a furniture finishing company, located in the parish of Eiriz, when one of the employees started showing symptoms and was tested, confirming the suspicions that he was infected. Tests were carried out on the 20 employees and two more tested positive. Preventively, the Directorate-General for Health decided to close the factory until the 11th, and ordered employees to comply with quarantine.

“Nobody has symptoms, we all gave negative results, even their family members were tested and no more cases appeared,” said Luís Abreu, owner of the company. It was through one of these positive cases that the virus was admitted to the Centro Escolar de Paços de Ferreira, where there are six confirmed cases.

“The school opened in compliance with all safety standards imposed by the General Directorate of Health,” explained Humberto Brito, president of the City Council of Paços de Ferreira, adding that the educational establishment was closed and employees sent home to fulfill their prophylactic isolation. “The council will now try to track as many people as possible, so that we can interrupt transmission chains”, concluded the mayor.

“Covid parties” infect students at the Polytechnic of Guarda. Face-to-face examinations were suspended

The Polytechnic Institute of Guarda (IPG) decided to suspend the face-to-face examinations at its facilities, transferring them to digital platforms, after being aware of the existence of students infected with Covid-19, it was announced this Sunday.

“The decision is due to information transmitted, Saturday night, by the Local Health Unit (ULS) of Guarda that there are students from the IPG who tested positive for Covid-19, eight of whom were admitted to the hospital because they did not have their accommodation conditions to be in isolation during the quarantine period “, says the IPG, in a statement sent to the Lusa agency.

According to the note, the students were infected outside the premises: “According to the information provided by, a part of the contagions occurred in ‘Covid parties’ held in Guarda, similarly to what happened in other cities with higher education establishments. These are young people who have lived together without complying with the recommendations of the health authorities”

The president of the IPG appeals “vehemently to all students” to “maintain the same care and rules outside the IPG that they observe within it”. “I ask you not to jeopardize your health or the health of those close to you. And I appeal to you not to waste, with actions that disrespect health care, the expectation and the effort that your families are making to who can attend higher education “, he says.

Covid-19. Three more deaths in Reguengos de Monsaraz

There are three more deaths resulting from the Covid-19 outbreak that has been active for several days in Reguengos de Minsaraz. Late yesterday morning, a 93-year-old woman died and in the late afternoon, an 89-year-old man also lost his life. This Sunday, another member of the local community died at the age of 52. The number of deaths resulting from this focus of infections has therefore risen to 12.

All deaths occurred at the Hospital do Espírito Santo de Évora (HESE). The data are from the Civil Protection of Reguengos de Monsaraz.

At present there are 163 accumulated positive cases, 10 of whom have recovered, and 141 active cases.

Union denounces “forced” mobilisation of doctors as a result of Reguengos de Monsaraz outbreak

The South Zone Doctors’ Union (SMZS) today denounced what it claims is a “forced mobilization of doctors” by the Regional Health Administration (ARS) of Alentejo to combat the outbreak of covid- 19 de Reguengos de Monsaraz.

“An autocratic attitude that lacks legal support, since moving to another municipality other than the usual place of work can only occur if there is an express agreement from the doctor”, says the document. In this sense, and because “any Decree-Law on a state of emergency” is not in force, SMZS considers the forced mobilization of doctors under the instruction of ARS Alentejo to be “abusive” and promises to initiate “all actions at the union and legal level where necessary ”.

“Without calling into question the duty of all doctors to provide care, SMZS informs that it has already made available to its members a draft of manifestation of unavailability for the fulfillment of the ARS Alentejo’s authoritarian determination”, the statement signed by the union’s management said.

Economy

Telecommunicating a “new opportunity”

The month of June marked the phased return to companies of many Portuguese teleworkers due to the pandemic, but several remain at home and companies have gained “new perspectives” on the advantages of remote work.

“As an organization, without a doubt, our view of teleworking has gained new perspectives. It has been proven that it is possible to create new work habits and that we should see them as a new opportunity ”, said the Head of HR Business Strategy of the Jerónimo Martins group, which, from the second half of the year May, started the phased return to the central offices of the approximately 1,000 employees who telecommuted.

According to Ana Cristina Silva, the group now intends to “continue this reflection and stabilize what will be the teleworking scenarios outside the scope of a pandemic”, but is “convinced that the future will pass through a greater balance between remote work and those working from offices”.

Currently with the capacity of his offices occupied by about 25%, the owner of supermarkets Pingo Doce says that it is “very likely” to maintain, “until the end of the year”, “a mixed regime (remote and in person), with teams in rotation”. Galp, which during the state of emergency kept on the ground – in industrial facilities, gas stations or offices – “about half” of its workers, “to guarantee the continuity of the operation of critical infrastructures for the country”, started in June 8 the return of the remaining 2,300 employees to the company’s facilities.

Leisure

Phased reopening of Youth Hostels

Movijovem, manager of youth hostels, stated yesterday that the phased reopening of these accommodations is due to “planning and security issues” although the majority were back in service by the end of June.”

Francisco Mota of Movijovem said “what is at issue are not public health reasons, but rather inoperability and sloppiness” when asked why hostels “did not open at the same time for the rest of the hotel industry”.

In response to these accusations, Movijovem indicates that 30 of the 42 youth hostels “were at the service of the community” due to covid-19, “responding to urgent and real situations and problems, welcoming people who are unable, in their homes, to provide prophylactic isolation and homeless people ”, which happened“ until the end of June”.

International Travel

Restrictions in place in Catalan

Spain began its summer vacation this weekend with the health system on alert for outbreaks of coronavirus, some 50 across the country, focusing on the Catalan province of Lleida, whose capital and surroundings will be confined since Saturday.

The Catalan government, which has competences in health, on Saturday decreed the confinement of the area, with about 210,000 inhabitants, in the face of the increase in cases of coronavirus. Entrances and exits in the affected territory, meetings of more than ten people in public and private spaces and visits to nursing homes are restricted.

Question mark over lack of reporting of Covid-19 cases in Madrid

Fernando Simón, the director of the Health Ministry’s Coordination Center for Health Alerts (CCAES), was speaking to journalists on 3rd July.

He stated “Among the cases detected in recent days, 56 were imported – i.e. from travellers who had arrived from outside of Spain. These cases, combined with those from declared outbreaks, explain a good part of the new infections, but not all of them.

For example, they do not explain what has happened in the Madrid region, which is yet to report any new outbreaks in its territory despite being, along with Catalonia, the area that is diagnosing the most cases. In recent days, it has reported between 25 and 40 cases detected the day before, with a total of 335 in the last seven days.

Asked by journalists about Madrid, Simón described the situation in that region and in Barcelona as a “little strange,” given that they were not reporting new outbreaks despite having such a large population. Could this mean that Madrid is not detecting them? “Just as any other region could not be,” he replied. “I think that we are doing a very good job of detecting cases but we know that we are not detecting 100% of them,” Simón added.

There are currently 58 outbreaks in Spain that have been detected, but the majority are “perfectly under control” or will mostly be brought under control in the coming days, Simón explained.

Covid semaphore: Belgium puts Spain in orange

Belgium changed the recommendation for tourist trips to Spain from “green” to “orange” “after the confinement decreed in the Catalan province of Lleida.

Belgium evaluates travel recommendations for European countries with a “traffic light” where it considers it safer to travel in Europe (non-essential travel, such as tourism) during the pandemic. The change from “green” to “orange” means that, from “possible trips” without conditions, these trips are now “possible under quarantine, a test (for coronavirus) or other conditions” , according to the Service’s website of Foreign Affairs of Belgium. Currently, Portugal is also in the same position as Spain.

In “red”, where it is currently not possible to travel, Belgium places Finland, Ireland, Malta and Norway.

Illegal immigration

Pandemic reduces Illegal Immigration in Ceuta

The illegal entry of sub-Saharan and Moroccan immigrants into Ceuta (Spanish city of Ceuta, on the north coast of Africa) has decreased due to the covid-19 pandemic, with an 80% reduction in arrivals by sea and 65% across land borders, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

According to data supplied by the ministry, released by the agency Efe, between 01 January and 30 June, 50 immigrants on board nine boats were registered in Ceuta.

The figure represents a drop compared to the first six months of 2019, when, according to the ministry, 254 immigrants entered the city in 29 boats. The decrease was 80.3% in the number of people and 69% in the number of boats.

Region Reports

Madeira Situation Report 6h July by Daniel Fernandes

Covid-19 update

There were no new Covid-19 cases yesterday. The suspected case, which had been detected at Funchal Airport on Thursday, has turned out negative after laboratory analysis. The number of cases remains at 93, with 90 recoveries and 3 active cases. All 3 active cases are from travellers who had arrived at Funchal Airport. They are currently in isolation in designated hotels or in private residences and so far have not needed hospital treatment.

There are 1,735 people under active monitoring and 2,401 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being carried out by the health authorities of the Region’s Municipalities through the ‘MadeiraSafetoDiscover’ app. As of Sunday, there had been 1,550 suspected cases, 1,457 of which had come back negative.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal Airport, 1,915 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 15h00). Overall, 25,400 samples have been analysed at Laboratório de Patologia Clínica do SESARAM (Madeira Health Service lab).

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 31 calls from Saturday to Sunday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,206.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,559 calls, with 151 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/05/caso-suspeito-de-covid-19-detectado-no-dia-2-nao-se-confirmou/

Funchal Mayor letter to Boris Johnson

Miguel Gouveia (Mayor of Funchal) wrote a letter to Boris Johnson (British Prime Minister) outlining strong arguments in favour of Madeira as a tourist destination for British citizens. He stated that Madeira took all necessary measures to ensure a safe holiday for tourists while enjoying a temperate climate, the natural wonders and the warm hospitality of the Madeiran people.

He added that, with only 93 Covid-19 cases, Madeira is one of the safest places in Europe and in the world to visit this summer. He reinforced this by mentioning the “Clean & Safe” seal introduced for restaurants, lodging and shops, the checks at Funchal and Porto Santo airports and the need to present evidence of a negative Covid-19 test or to be tested on arrival. He finished by saying Madeira had been elected as the best insular destination in Europe and that the Madeira archipelago has long been a favourite destination for British citizens.

The main source market of tourism to Madeira is the UK and Germany.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97834/Covid-19_Funchal_apresenta_argumentos_fortes_a_favor_da_Madeira_ao_primeiro-ministro_britanico

Portuguese President visit to Madeira

President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa’s visit to Madeira allowed him to be briefed on public health, the strategy adopted, its organisation, execution and results. He was also informed on the people who had planned, anticipated and executed the plans.

He said it was important to have talked with business-owners (particularly from the hotels) and the  people (particularly in Câmara de Lobos – where there was a sanitary cordon during part of the state of emergency), to understand what is at stake in the Region.

He also had the opportunity to understand the health measures in place at Funchal Airport to deal with the thousands of tourists Madeira is hoping to receive, and to see if these measures can be implemented at airports in the mainland. He revealed his visit allowed him to gather plenty of important political information and that he will be able to convey the importance of what is happening in Madeira.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97837/Marcelo_diz_levar_da_Madeira_elementos_politicos_importantes_para_transmitir_a_Republica

More tourists arrived in Madeira

Yesterday afternoon, a flight from Dusseldorf, carrying 131 tourists, landed at Funchal Airport. The passengers were offered the typical Madeira bananas, small bottles of Madeira Wine, bottles of water and face masks. Another flight from the Canary Islands also landed. Ten flights are scheduled to land in Madeira today, most of them from the mainland and other Portuguese islands. Additionally, a flight from Amsterdam is scheduled to land at 9h10 and another from Brussels is expected to land at 16h45.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97832/131_turistas_da_Alemanha_recebidos_no_Aeroporto_com_a_tipica_banana_da_Madeira_

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97795/Madeira_recebe_aviao_proveniente_de_Dusseldorf

3 million Euros spent on campaign hospital

Miguel Albuquerque, President of the Madeira Regional Government, revealed the Region spent 3 million Euros on a separate SESARAM Covid-19 unit, which was built in 15 days. Júlio Nobrega, the clinical director of Dr- Nélio Mendonça Hospital, said this allowed Covid-19 patients to be treated in a separate unit, without having contact with other patients. He added that that a cleaning team was always ready whenever a patient was being moved.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97790/Albuquerque_revela_ter_gasto_3_milhoes_com_o_hospital_de_campanha_no_SESARAM

Year 9 students create videos and websites to promote tourism to Madeira

“Circumstances change, goals don’t!” That’s how a year 9 English class from EB 2, 3 Dr. Horácio Bento de Gouveia started a project called ‘Celebrate’. The aim is to celebrate the beauty and natural richness of the Madeira archipelago, to practice what was learnt and to help tourism to recover. Considering the fact that Madeira suffered greatly due to the suspension of tourism, the students were challenged to work, individually or as a group, in order to create videos or websites highlighting the beauty of Madeira and encouraging tourists to visit Madeira. The idea is to go further and to have the work translated into different languages so as to reach the biggest possible number of potential tourists.

Afterwards, some regional tourism operators were contacted and offered the material created by the class, to be used to complement their tourist advertising. Madeira Luxury Villas is already using these resources on its social media pages.

This project was based on a problem-based-learning methodology, which combines academic learning with the real needs of the community. Instead of reading and using the same grammatical exercises, a decision was made to apply the knowledge to the speeches and written content on the website, thus applying the curriculum to the real world.

The students were given a clear goal to accomplish and were responsible for their own learning while different paces and learning levels were still respected. It was shown that distance-learning was still possible. Although the pandemic forced the circumstances to change, the dreams and goals of the young students cannot be dampened. The future is at stake and this work shows that we are stronger together.

A group of students explained that: “Madeira is yours to discover. Dare to visit us and we will welcome you with open arms!”

These student works can be found on the ‘Comunidade HBG’ Facebook page. This is one of the websites created as part of this project: https://leisuremadeira.wixsite.com/travel?fbclid=IwAR0H1ufYKMAxSr080HPJifBbcKECPkqXSvQvJ3vKVzBnAF7Yfsm7qCtp3mM

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/05/alunos-da-escola-horacio-bento-criam-videos-e-websites-para-a-promocao-turistica-da-madeira/

Power cut

Empresa de Electricidade da Madeira (Madeira power supplier) announced there will be power cuts on the following days, due to planned work on the electricity supply network. The following areas will be affected:

FUNCHAL

7th July – 09h00 to 12h00:

  •  Estrada Comandante Camacho de Freitas (numbers 582 to 649)
  • Caminho do Galeão (numbers 3 to 7) & Caminho da Ribeira de Santana (numbers 2 to 11)
  • Travessa dos Pereiras (numbers 22 to 33) & Travessa do Ribeiro do Canavial (numbers 3 to 7)
  • Escadas da Ribeira (numbers 2 to 8)

7th July – 09h00 to 11h30 & 14h00 to 16h00 – Rampa Quinta Carvalhal

8th and 9th July – 09h00 to 11h30 & 14h00 to 16h00

  • Caminho do Jamboto (numbers 3, 46 and door 3)
  • Beco Poço das Freiras (numbers 3 to 15)
  • Travessa Quinta das Freiras
  • 10th July – 09h00 to 12h00 – Rua da Escola Secundária do Galeão (numbers 6 to 8)

CÂMARA DE LOBOS

7th July – 09h00 to 12h00:

  • Caminho das Preces (between numbers 57 and 117) & Caminho do Serrado (entrance number 1 of Caminho do Serrado) & Caminho do Lagar da Giesta (partial)
  • Bairro da Palmeira (Blocos/Blocks 5, 6, 7 and 8)

PORTO MONIZ

7th July – 09h00 to 9h30 & 12h30 to 13h00 –  Casa do Elias, Câmara de Carga and Campo de Futebol (football pitch)

FAJÃ DA OVELHA – Fonte do Bispo 7th July – 09h00 to 13h00

However, power could be restored during the time frame mentioned above. So, for safety purposes, it should be assumed that there will be power at any time during this period of time.

If necessary, customers can contact the free Customer Support Service (Serviço de Apoio ao Cliente): 800 221 187.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/04/publicidade-o-fornecimento-de-energia-sera-interrompido-nos-dias-horas-e-locais-abaixo-indicados-anuncio-45-2020-2/

 

Algarve

Unemployment in the Algarve

According to data from the Institute of Employment and Professional Training (IEFP) unemployment in the Algarve increased by more than 200% in May to almost 28 thousand unemployed, reaching mainly the hotel sector, which despairs for the arrival of tourists to mitigate the “blow” of almost three months of losses.

The heat that embraces the Algarve reminds us that July has arrived, unlike tourists, who should be filling the region’s hotels, beaches and restaurants by this time, but who insist on not showing up in the usual amount for the time of year. According to IEFP, in May 2020 the Algarve was the region that registered the largest increase in the number of unemployed registered in the country, with a growth of 202.4%, compared to the same month last year.

“It is a complicated situation, with a very high number of unemployment, which worries us. In February, no one would believe that this would happen, because we had an increasingly dynamic economy, with employment increasing and unemployment decreasing”, says the regional delegate of that institute.

According to Madalena Feu, the increase in unemployment, contrary to the trend of the last few years, has been growing, compared to the same months of 2019: in March there were 21,636 unemployed in the region (41% more), in April another 26,379 (more 120%) and in May 27,675 (plus 202%).

As the beginning of the covid-19 pandemic coincided with the start of hiring for the tourist season, thousands of people were not even hired, while others were dismissed during the trial period. In a normal summer, Tivoli Hotels & Resorts would have around 1,000 people working in the six units in the Algarve – apart from those who are hired by the hour, the day, or the week – but, at the moment, it has only about half, according to the group’s regional director of operations, Jorge Beldade.

“We, in March, when the beginning of this pandemic, were in the beginning of hiring about 350 people at the time. We ended up hiring only 89 and, obviously, all the others stopped being hired and then the hotels closed and we started all people to ‘lay-off’ ”, he says.

In the Algarve, 85% of hotels reopened in June or are now reopening in early July, a number that is encouraging – taking into account the sector’s forecasts at the beginning of the pandemic, which did not indicate that so many units would reopen this year.  After the low season, when it was preparing to enter the tourist season, the region faces a summer “that will not be comparable” to last year and enters a low season again, which, in practice, will be equivalent “to three low seasons in a row ”, summarizes the leader of the Association of Hotels and Tourist Enterprises of the Algarve (AHETA).

https://www.algarveprimeiro.com/d/em-maio-desemprego-aumentou-mais-de-200-no-algarve-/33090-4

Faro Municipal Emergency Plan remains in force

The Municipal Civil Protection Emergency Plan of Faro will continue, following a decision by the Municipal Civil Protection Commission of the district capital, while the current Alert Situation is in effect, the municipality announced.

This measure was taken due to the increase in the population in the municipality during the bathing season and the evolution of the number of people infected in the Algarve region, thus intending to keep active preventive measures and the entire structure of response to the covid-19 pandemic.

The Municipality of Faro recommends that the population “continue to comply with the civic spirit that it has been demonstrating and that it remains informed about the safety and prevention recommendations and measures of the Directorate-General for Health, in particular those that respect the social modesty. and personal hygiene standards, ”he said in a statement.

Azores

Situation Report Azores 5th July – 6th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

“Ryanair” has started ‘direct’ flights from London “Stansted” airport to the Azores again, the first flight to Ponta Delgada airport arrived on Saturday the 4th of July and currently, they’re scheduled to continue for the rest of the year.  Another flight from the same airport to Ponta Delgada is scheduled for every Tuesday from the 7th of July until the 29th of September.  On Wednesdays, from the 8th of July until the 21st of October, Ryanair will also fly from “Stanstead” to Terceira.

At the moment, SATA “Azores Airlines” don’t have any plans to fly directly from the UK this year although they are flying twice a week from Frankfurt to Ponta Delgada on Thursdays and Sundays.

People are hoping that because of the direct flights and the very low levels of Covid-19 recorded in the ‘Archipelago’, the UK government will suspend the ‘14-day quarantine’ requirement for passengers, returning there from Portugal and the Azores.

The Regional Health Authority reports that the 938 tests have been carried out in the Region in the last 24 hours but there were no new ‘positive’ cases of “COVID-19”. So, the Region maintains a total of 154 cases of infection with six ‘active’ cases, four on the island of São Miguel, one on the island of Terceira and one on the island of Flores.  Since the outbreak began on the 15th of March, 130 people have recovered, two have returned to mainland Portugal but sadly, 16 have died.

 

Portugal Situation Report 5th July 2020

Introduction

Today is our traditional “Happy Sunday”, but some may ask if it has been a happy week? Certainly the news of Portugal’s exclusion from the Travel Corridor has been a major setback to all the positive steps that Portugal has taken in tackling this pandemic.

The trends in confirmed cases are mainly steady with slightly more confirmed cases in the last week, 2470 cases compared with 2348 the previous week and 2378 the week before that. The main focus continues centred in particular areas of Lisbon, including Sintra and Cascais and the vast majority of these cases have been identified as a result of asymptomatic testing. However, when questioned by journalists yesterday the Minister of Health also admitted that at this time there were 34 outbreaks in various parts of the country and that it has “been a difficult week in fighting the pandemic”. We, at Safe Communities have reported on some of these outbreaks as they are more significant, such as in Monsaraz, Grandola, and Vila Real but the others appear to be relatively small.

Having monitored this outbreak closely from the very beginning there will be times when things go well and there will be other times when there are setbacks. This is the same in dealing with any crisis such as fighting forest fires or whatever. This week we experienced the latter.

When things go badly there is a tendency to focus on this by trying to apportion blame (which is never helpful) and lose sight of the overall picture and what has been achieve, such as Portugal having one of the lowest death rates in Europe. We have seen this blame during the last week with the Mayor of Lisbon criticising health officials, media critising the Minister of Health over transparency of the figures, criticism of the Infarmed meetings attended by the President as well as individuals on Facebook blaming people arriving from Brazil for causing the problems in Lisbon, despite the fact the last imported case from Brazil was nearly 3 months ago!

So I invite everyone today to think positively and make a positive comment on our Facebook page – we have many and if you view our Positive Messages page on our website you will hopefully feel a little better.

There are more tangible things we can do as well. As we know the tourism industry has suffered a great deal through the lack of tourists. So let us as residents do our best to go some way in helping make up for this by supporting our local restaurants, buy local products, go for a mini-break in a hotel and when we eat out or use various services, give a reasonable tip – if you can afford it. This will not fully make up for the loss of income, but it will help them a bit and may just ensure that your favourite local restaurant survives. Portugal deserves our support.

Yesterday there was some confusion on whether or not those returning to the UK from the Azores and Madeira had to go into quarantine. We took this up with the British Embassy. Later Brits in Portugal FB posted “the current requirement for all passengers arriving in the UK from Portugal to quarantine for fourteen days will remain in force for the time being. This applies to travel from the whole of Portugal (including Madeira and the Azores).”

Lastly we must stay focused on what we need to do to fight the disease; off course I am referring to social distancing, wearing masks and hygiene.

Have a Happy and Safe Sunday

Headlines

Marcelo recalls that Portugal has already supported the United Kingdom in difficult times

The President of the Republic said this Friday that the Portuguese have already supported the United Kingdom in difficult times when commenting on the British Government’s decision to exclude Portugal from the list of countries considered safe in relation to the covid-19 pandemic.

The United Kingdom, is our oldest ally, our relationship goes back many centuries and there is one thing that everyone knows: that in people’s lives, as in countries, sometimes they are at the top, sometimes they are in and when you’re on the bottom you need others. When you’re on top – or when you think you’re on top – sometimes you forget others” said Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa.

The President of the Republic commented on the exclusion of Portugal from the list of 59 countries and territories considered safe by the British Government, which means that passengers from Portugal will have to comply with the 14 quarantine days imposed by the Boris Johnson executive due to the covid pandemic. -19.

“In Portugal we have very different situations in terms of the pandemic – that is why there is a state of calamity, a state of contingency and a state of alert – that should not be treated in the same way, because they are different. And these realities different, from our point of view, means that whoever looks at Portugal from outside has to look at different realities “, defended Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa.

Read more here

Covid-19 Statistics

Portugal yesterday registered seven more deaths due to the covid-19, in relation to Friday, and 413 more infected, of whom 317 were in the region of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, according to the Directorate- General of Health (DGS).

According to the DGS daily epidemiological bulletin, the total number of deaths from covid-19 since the beginning of the pandemic is 1,605 and the total number of confirmed cases is 43,569 infected. The number of recovered patients increased by 348, bring the total to 28,772.

The seven deaths recorded today occurred in the region of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, the region with the highest number of new cases in recent weeks. The region has a total of 20,273 of confirmed cases so far.

Health

At this moment, Portugal has 34 outbreaks of covid-19, said this Friday the Minister of Health, Marta Temido, in a press conference.

Of the 34 outbreaks, 18 are in the Regional Health Administration of the North, five in the Center, another five in the Alentejo and another six in the Algarve.

“We will therefore have to continue to commit our best effort to respond to this pandemic”, acknowledged Marta Temido Minister of Health. She also reiterated that the National Health Service (SNS) continues to be able to respond to the covid-19 pandemic, namely in the region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley.

” I want to make it very clear: the National Health Service continues to respond in this which has been a difficult week to fight the pandemic, ” he said, adding that Portugal has 495 nursing beds with 19 covid patients, 72 of whom are in intensive care.

In addition, he clarified that there are 365 nursing beds and 60 intensive care beds occupied by patients with covid-19 in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley. The multidisciplinary teams created in the context of combating the pandemic in the Lisbon region made 1100 contacts and home visits, in a region that has around ten thousand people under surveillance for family health.

According to the minister, the numbers of new cases “are not” those that the Government would like to have, considering that the country’s epidemiological situation remains marked “by the force of the impact in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, more specifically in the Metropolitan Area of Lisbon”.

DGS guarantees “transparency” in the daily bulletins presented to the country

In response to the latest news that the number of people infected by the new coronavirus in Portugal does not include all cases, DGS has reiterated that the data provided daily is guided by “rigor and transparency”.

In a statement sent to the newsrooms, the Directorate-General for Health countered the complaints that the epidemiological data presented are not counting all the new ones infected with covid-19, explaining once again that the surveillance of the disease is done through SINAVE.

“The national epidemiological surveillance system (SINAVE), which is used to account for cases of covid-19, depends on timely notification by doctors and laboratories that identify cases throughout the national territory “, he stressed, ensuring that the notifications received “are analysed daily to ensure data validity “.

“Every day there is a processing of the data in order to aggregate the clinical and laboratory data to the same person, to confirm the state of covid-19 patient and to identify duplicates. These data are still subject to a quality control before the publication of the report concerning the epidemiological situation and can also be read in the press release.

DGS also adds that it has been guided “by a relationship of rigor and transparency in daily reports, communications, conferences and interviews”. The clarification comes after the Expresso newspaper reported yesterday, that several professionals in the field and former leaders of the health sector “question the veracity of the extent of the infection”.

The complaints, emphasizes the weekly, refer to ” discrepancies in the records, such as reported outbreaks that do not appear in the DGS statistics, differences between the total number of infections and the distribution by municipality, a greater number of cases registered by the authorities of health than reported in the database or even counties that the official bulletin says have had no new patients for weeks but where there are still covid admissions to local emergencies and public health units “.

President of PSD party considers Infarmed meetings to have “little use”

The president of the PSD party considers that “Infarmed meetings (attended by the President of the Republic and Prime Minister with health experts) are starting to have little use”, and commented that these meetings with specialists should present a “very objective and short photograph” of the evolution of the pandemic, and give “technical advice”.

Rui Rio took this position in an interview on Porto Canal’s program Gente que Conta, which will be broadcast on Saturday night.

“The first meetings, particularly the first two at Infarmed, were relevant meetings as we all knew very little about epidemics, pandemics, this and that. It was the explanation of the situation, and they were extraordinarily useful for those who watched them”, he started by saying.

But the social-democratic leader considered that, afterwards, “it started to be a little bit more of the same” and stated: “there are moments when graphics are behind each other, with such speed, that the people who are watching do not even have time to absorb even what the graph is showing” and “often [the technical presentation] does not have the most logical chain”.

Tourism

Chaves municipality welcomes Spaniards again after opening of borders

Three and a half months later, the reopening of borders between Portugal and Spain allows the return of Spanish neighbors to Chaves, for tourism, gastronomy and commerce, some even visiting the country for the first time turn.

Were it not for the new ‘scenario’ of massive use of masks, due to the covid-19 pandemic, and the movement in the city center of Chaves, in the district of Vila Real, resembled this morning to any summer day in July in the recent past. Some tourists in Chaves have come over, due to the “different environment” and “clothing stores”, and are also not afraid of the new coronavirus because “Portugal is better than Spain”.

Travel

Reaction to Travel Corridor by Minister of Health

Questioned at a press conference yesterday, in relation to the decision of the British government to leave Portugal out of the travel corridor of the United Kingdom, the Minister of Health said that she finds no justification for this measure.

“There is nothing in the Portuguese epidemiological situation to justify this decision”, he defended.

In parliament

Bloco de Esquerda says PS legislature is a “History of Refusals”

The BE leader Catarina Martins said yesterday that the Socialist Party legislature has been the “history of refusals” as much about an agreement at the end of the 2019 elections, either in refusing a Supplementary Budget beyond the response of emergency.

She claimed “Until now, and despite the occasional achievements imposed by the left, this legislature [led by António Costa] has unfortunately been the history of the Socialist Party’s refusals. He refused to reach an agreement at the end of the 2019 [legislative] elections and now he refused that the Supplementary Budget beyond the emergency response could have a more structural response”.

Catarina Martins considered that at a time when it is perceived that “very strong” public policies are needed, this should be done with a “long strategic horizon to insure people and not to let the crisis deepen”.

“We also know that it was not to go back to what was, but to do better,” she added.

“Right now, that we should be discussing the [State] Budget for 2021, it seems to even prefer a certain hostility to the left”, she declared, arguing that this is the moment when “very strong public policies are needed, with a strategic horizon long to hold people back, so as not to let the crisis deepen ”.

Region Report

Madeira situation report by Daniel Fernandes

Useful information and websites

A reminder that all passengers arriving from outside the Madeira Region, who have evidence of a negative Covid-19 test carried out within 72h before departure, in laboratories certified by national or international authorities, will be allowed to continue towards their destination. However, passengers must present evidence of this negative Covid-19, which can also be submitted before travelling, along with the traveller registration.

As a result of a partnership between the Madeira Regional Government and NOVA Medical School – Faculdade de Ciências Médicas, passengers heading to Madeira can be tested for Covid-19, free of charge, at Laboratório CEDOC – Centro de Estudos de Doenças Crónicas:

Laboratório CEDOC – Centro de Estudos de Doenças Crónicas

NOVA Medical School – Faculdade de Ciências Médicas

Address: Campo Mártires da Pátria, 130 – 1169-056 Lisboa, Portugal

Sample collections: Mondays to Fridays – 08h00 – 10h00

Sample collections can be booked in the following ways:

Booking form: https://forms.gle/c8B1TzWBeQeKcauw6

Email: diagnostico.covid@nms.unl.pt

Phone: 910 459 769

https://covidmadeira.pt/onde-realizar-testes-em-portugal-continental/

Madeira Traveller Registrationhttps://madeirasafe.com/#/login

Madeira Safe to Discoverhttps://madeirasafetodiscover.com

Safe to Discover Guidehttps://madeirasafetodiscover.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/Tourism-reopening-in-Madeira_Final.pdf

Covid-19 update

There was a new Covid-19 case yesterday. This case was identified after a passenger was tested after arriving at Funchal Airport. The passenger is currently in isolation in a residence in the Municipality of Santa Cruz. The number of cases is now 93, with 90 recoveries and 3 active cases. As for the suspected case that had been detected on Thursday at Funchal Airport, it remains under epidemiological investigation. The patient is in isolation in a residence in the Municipality of Funchal while waiting for a definitive laboratory result.

There are 319 people under active monitoring and 2,700 people in self-monitoring. They are being monitored through the “MadeiraSafetoDiscover” app. As of yesterday, there had been 1,550 suspected cases.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal Airport, 1,668 samples had been collected until yesterday (at 20h00). Overall, 24,684 samples have been analysed at Laboratório de Patologia Clínica do SESARAM (Madeira Health Service lab).

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 38 calls from Friday to Saturday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,175.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,544 calls, with 150 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/04/madeira-tem-mais-um-caso-positivo-de-covid-19-detectado-hoje-no-aeroporto/

Portuguese President believes Madeira will be exempt from UK quarantine rules

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, the Portuguese President, believes the UK will remove the requirement for travellers returning from Madeira to go into quarantine. In remarks given on his first visit to Madeira since the start of the pandemic, he explained that Madeira went through a difficult, complex but ultimately successful process in controlling the Covid-19 pandemic in Madeira. He added that the epidemiological data provides so much evidence of this that Madeira is considered to be a role model when it comes to trust and safety. This is why he believes the statistics will be convince the British allies.

The President also said that in terms of tourism, there is a considerable occupancy level despite this being an abnormal year. He acknowledged that the Region has dealt with the pandemic in a way that brings plenty of hope for the future.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97746/Marcelo_acredita_que_o_Reino_Unido_vai_retirar_a_quarentena_de_quem_chegar_da_Madeira

Video shows the arrival of passengers on the 1st of July

The Madeira Promotion Bureau (Associação de Promoção da Madeira – APM) published a video showing the arrival of passengers at Funchal Airport on the 1st of July, the day when Madeira reopened to tourism. It described the reopening as a huge success.

Four flights, from Lisbon and Porto, carrying 425 passengers, landed on the 1st of July. A total of 243 passengers were tested for Covid-19 in the airport. On average, testing took less than an hour and all tests came back negative.  Nuno Vale, the executive-director of the Madeira Promotion Bureau, said the first day of the airport reopening was a “real success”.

All tests were carried out in record timing and in a friendly atmosphere, in which tourists were offered some gifts. Detailed planning and preparations were carried out so as to provide a good experience for passengers as soon as they arrive. He stated that the Region is making a huge effort to ensure the safety of all visitors and residents, with the aim of making Madeira a successful destination. He congratulated Madeira not only for being almost Covid-19 free, but also for having introduced strict but efficient entry checks while providing a good tourist experience.

More than 200 professionals, mostly from healthcare, were assigned to the new passenger control system. The airport itself has a permanent team of about 60-70 professionals. The video, published as part of the “Madeira Safe to Discover” project, can be viewed on the following link:

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97700/Imagens_mostram_a_chegada_dos_passageiros_ao_Aeroporto_no_ambito_do_Madeira_Safe_to_Discover_com_video

Algarve

UK decision will bring “serious damage” to the Algarve, hoteliers say

Tourism in the Algarve will have “serious losses” due to the United Kingdom’s decision to exclude Portugal from the air corridor that exempts citizens from quarantine when returning from travel, considered the main Algarve hotel association.

The president of the Association of Hotels and Tourist Enterprises of the Algarve (AHETA), Elidérico Viegas, told the agency Lusa that the United Kingdom made a decision “based on criteria that are not very objective” by including Portugal in the list and leaving out other countries where the situation epidemiological impact due to the covid-19 pandemic is more intense than in the Algarve or Portugal.

Elidérico Viegas gave the example of Greece, Italy or Spain, which were considered “green” countries and included in the air corridor with the United Kingdom, which is exempt from quarantine for 14 days when returning from these destinations, despite having registered a number of infected people. “Very distant” from those seen in the Algarve and Portugal.

“The impact is enormous not only for tourism, but also for the wealth of the region and the country itself”, estimated the president of the main hotel association in the Algarve, noting that the United Kingdom represents for the region “6,400,000 overnight stays per year, a third of tourists and overnight stays”and“almost 50% of passengers arriving at Faro airport”.

Elidérico Viegas also pointed out the “2.2 million British tourists who come to the Algarve every year” and considered that “it will not be the same” with these restrictions, even if there are Britons who may “eventually come to the Algarve, either directly or through other countries”.

“We are here before a situation that causes serious damage to the region’s economy and, above all, to the hotel and tourist companies”, anticipated the president of AHETA, who expects “the development of diplomatic and other efforts from the” highest officials in the nation “to revoke the decision “to impose quarantine on the British who return to their country from Portugal.

The measure should “be revoked both for the interest of the Algarve and for British tourists who want to come to the region”, argued Elidérico Viegas.

Faro and Romania “join hands” in the project “The Role of Art in Times of Crisis”

A new project “The Role of Art in Times of Crisis”, was announced yesterday by the Faro2027 team, responsible for the Candidacy of Faro to the European Capital of Culture, in partnership with the Cultural Center of Cluj-Napoca (Romania) and was presented on its website and official social networks Faro2027.

The project includes 28 works by artists from the Algarve and Romania that aim to help the community in general to understand and gain a new perspective on the moment we live in, revealing the fundamental role of art in our society.

According to the same publication, during the state of emergency, a consequence of the pandemic caused by Covid-19, the Faro2027 team launched the challenge to artists from all over the Algarve to develop artistic projects with the aim of informing and making the general public aware about the importance of monitoring and complying with health authorities’ recommendations for the common good. Each artist selected one of the three proposed themes – Together, Responsibility and Heroes – and developed an artistic work in a format easily presented online.

Portimão approves “robust and ambitious” strategy for 10 years in defending the forest against fires

The Municipal Assembly unanimously approved the new Forest Fire Protection Plan, which organizes prevention and combat in the next decade. Under the motto #portimao sem fogos depended todos” last Tuesday, June 30, the Municipal Plan for the Defense of the Forest Against Fires (PMDFCI) was presented, voted and approved unanimously by all members of the parties seated in the Municipal Assembly of Portimão. ) for the next 10 years (2020-2029 / 30).

According to the Municipality in a statement, this is a “robust and ambitious” strategy that included the involvement of entities that contribute to the prevention and fight against rural fires in the municipality.

Although the Municipal Commission for the Defence of the Forest of Portimão also approved, unanimously, on April 30, the Municipal Operational Plan (POM), which materializes the strategy for preventing and fighting rural fires for this year, and which is revised annually, with this plan, the municipality’s strategy for the coming years is materialized and assumed, with regard to the conservation and protection of the county’s rural space.

According to the same document, the Plan now approved, was prepared by the Technical Forestry Office of the Municipal Civil Protection Service and received a favourable opinion from the Municipal Forest Defense Commission and a binding opinion from the Institute for Nature and Forest Conservation (ICNF)), having been approved in unison by the executive of the City Council and by all members of the Municipal Assembly, after a period of public consultation.

 

Situation Report Azores 4th July – 5th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

The islanders of Flores have had their first case of “Covid-19” since the outbreak of the ‘pandemic’ hit the Azores, back on March the 15th.  It’s a 39-year-old man who’d travelled from the mainland to São Miguel on the 30th of June and went on to Flores on July 1st.  On arrival, he’d presented a ‘negative’ test for the virus but 6 days later, he tested ‘positive’ on a second ‘required’ test.  Currently, he’s in a stable clinical situation and the procedures defined for a confirmed case, ‘testing’ and ‘surveillance’ of close contacts, have already been carried out by the local health authorities.  Tests on the 3 people with whom he was travelling and staying since his arrival in the region, have shown ‘negative’ results.

To date, 154 cases of infection have been detected in the ‘Archipelago’ and there are currently 6 ‘active’ cases, 4 on the island of São Miguel, 1 on the island of Terceira and now, 1 on the island of Flores.  So far 132 have recovered, sadly 16 people have died.

 

Portugal Situation Report 4th July 2020

Introduction

Yesterday was certainly dominated by the announcement by the British Government of the creation of “travel corridors” and that one of the countries not on the list is Portugal, with the exemption of the Azores and Madeira. This has obviously come as a disappointment to many.

With an economy based heavily on tourism and Portugal being the favourite choice for many holiday makers, this was a tremendous blow.

Portugal has been internationally recognised as having done more than most countries to contain the Covid-19, and we have one of the lowest death and infection rates in Europe. However it appears that very recent trends in confirmed cases, mainly focused in some  parts of Lisbon, which were incidentally identified through one of the highest testing levels in Europe, have been a factor in this decision. Unfortunately the methodology used in coming to this decision has not been made public, and it would be helpful I feel if there was more transparency and clarity on how these decisions  are made.

We feel very sorry for many people who were planning their holiday here, and visiting for family reunions, but with the prospect of 14 days in quarantine upon return, this to many is no longer a viable proposition.  This of course is a setback for the Portuguese economy, which has suffered considerably over the last few months in particular the tourism industry in the Algarve. We do hope that the British government will be in a position to review this decision soon, based upon more positive figures.

So the waiting is now over and not a “traffic lights” system which had been widely speculated in the media. As we have repeatedly advised over the last few days it is best to avoid speculation and await official announcements.

Basically there appear to be two pieces of Gov.UK advice one in the form of travel advice updates, including one for Portugal and another in respect of these new “travel corridors”

In this newsletter we have published an introduction to the GOV.UK pages dealing with this.

There has been a swift response from the tourism boards in Portugal and also from the Prime Minister António Costa who published a Tweet last night saying:  “Which is the safest place to stay?” he wrote alongside the graphic showing confirmed cases in the UK compared to Portugal. “You are welcome to spend a safe holiday in Algarve! #UK #visitportugal.”

The only tiny ray of hope is that British transport minister Grant Shapps has said the list “could be increased in the coming days, after additional discussions between the United Kingdom and international partners”.

Lastly a reminder if you are not already hot under the collar that the next few days will get even hotter with temperature  up to around 40C in many parts especially in the eastern areas of the country. Please take all precautions to inadvertently starting a rural fire and also to avoid dehydration by drinking plenty of water if you are taking physical exercise outdoors.

 

Headlines

Yesterday Brits in Portugal  Facebook page posted information  that “It has been announced today that the FCO has updated its global advisory against ‘all but essential’ travel, exempting a number of destinations that no longer pose a high risk for British travellers. Travellers between these destinations and UK will no longer be required to self-isolate from 10 July – this applies to all travel to England, by train, ferry, coach, air or any other route.

In the case of Portugal, from 4 July, Madeira and the Azores are exempt from the FCO advice against all non-essential international travel. This is based on the current assessment of COVID-19 risks. Unfortunately, this exemption has not, at this stage, been applied to mainland Portugal. The Covid pandemic is still ongoing, which means that travel will be different and disruption is possible”.

DGS Covid-19 Situation report

Portugal recorded 11 deaths and 374 new cases of covid-19 infection from Thursday to Friday. Altogether, there are 43,156 infected and 1598 deaths. There are 327 more people recovered.

According to the daily bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health, which arrived several hours later than usual, 11 people sadly died in Portugal since. The number of new deaths is the highest for nearly a month. The new fatalities were all recorded in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley: there are nine men (two aged between 50 and 59 years, one sixty years old, two in their 70s and three aged 80 years or more.

Of the new contagions, 300 were registered in Lisbon and Vale do Tajo (which adds up to a total of 19,656 infected), which is equivalent to 80% of the total.

There are 495 people in the country receiving hospital treatment (15 fewer than the previous day), 72 of whom are in intensive care units (minus five). There are 28,424 recovered cases, 327 more than yesterday.

Health

Minister reaffirms SNS remains responsive

The Minister of Health, Marta Temido, reiterated today that the National Health Service (SNS) continues to be able to respond to the covid-19 pandemic, namely in the region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley.

“I want to make it very clear: the National Health Service continues to respond in what has been a difficult week to fight the pandemic,” said Marta Temido, during the regular press conference to update information about the covid-19 pandemic.

According to the official, Portugal has 495 nursing beds with covid-19 patients, 72 of whom are in intensive care.

According to Marta Temido, 365 nursing beds and 60 intensive care beds are occupied by patients with covid-19 in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley.

“Lisbon and the Tagus Valley have 6,100 beds and 272 intensive care units,” said the minister.

During the press conference, Marta Temido stressed that the multidisciplinary teams created in the context of combating the covid-19 pandemic in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley made 1,100 contacts and home visits, in a region that has around ten thousand people on surveillance for family health.

According to the minister, the numbers of new cases “are not” those that the Government would like to have, considering that the country’s epidemiological situation remains marked “by the force of the impact in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, more specifically in the Metropolitan Area of Lisbon”.

International travel

Update FCO Travel Advice

Coronavirus (COVID-19): countries and territories exempt from advice against ‘all but essential’ international travel

The FCO has updated its global advisory against ‘all but essential’ travel, exempting destinations that no longer pose an unacceptably high risk for British travellers.

These exemptions come into effect on 4 July. All our advice will remain under constant review to take into account the latest situation in each country.

These countries have been assessed as no longer presenting an unacceptably high risk to British people travelling abroad. Foreign & Commonwealth Office travel advice is based on risks to British nationals, including in-country public health assessments.

In respect of Portugal only the Azores and Madeira are on the exemption list

Details here:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-countries-and-territories-exempt-from-advice-against-all-but-essential-international-travel

As a consequence the Gov.UK travel Advice has been updated from 4th July

https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/portugal

Travel Corridors

GOV.UK has published information on its “Travel Corridors”

According to the site it states “Coronavirus regulations mean that you must self-isolate for 14 days if you return to the UK from a country outside the common travel area.

The government is satisfied that it is now safe to ease these measures in England and has introduced travel corridors for some countries and territories.

Exemption rules

From 10 July 2020 you will not have to self-isolate when you arrive in England, if you:

  • are travelling or returning from one of the travel corridor countries
  • have not been to or stopped in a country that’s not on the travel corridor list in the previous 14 day

This applies to all travel to England, by train, ferry, coach, air or any other route.

If you have been to or stopped in a country that’s not on the travel corridor list you will have to self-isolate until 14 days have passed since you left that country”

“This list could be increased in the coming days, after further discussions between the UK and international partners,” says the British Ministry of Transport in the note published on its official website.

 Tourism

Reaction to Portugal’s exclusion from the air corridor

The President of Turismo do Algarve yesterday considered that Portugal was “penalised for speaking the truth” in relation to new cases of covid-19, one of the criteria that led to the country’s exclusion from an air corridor with the United Kingdom.

“We were clearly penalised for speaking the truth. When we compare the number of tests per 100 thousand inhabitants of different countries, we realize that there are countries that have been privileged in this new condition that test three, four times less than Portugal”, said João Fernandes.

According to that official, the decision – which implies that the British have to comply with quarantine on their return to the country, if they spend their holidays in Portugal – is not based on “facts”, there are several factors that were not considered.

Portugal, where several outbreaks have been identified in recent weeks, is not on today’s published list of 59 countries and territories where the British can go on holiday without quarantining their return and which includes Spain, Germany, Greece, Italy, Macau or Jamaica.

According to João Fernandes, the British market “is the most expressive in the region” throughout the year, representing almost six million overnight stays, despite, in the summer, the most relevant market for the Algarve being the national market.

The President of Turismo do Porto and North of Portugal (TPNP) was today “irritated” by the fact that Portugal was excluded from the “international travel corridors” of the United Kingdom, something that expects it to be “quickly rectified”.

Covid-19: Porto and North tourism “annoyed” excluding Portugal from the UK list

The President of Turismo do Porto and North of Portugal (TPNP) was today “irritated” by the fact that Portugal was excluded from the “international travel corridors” of the United Kingdom, something that expects it to be “quickly rectified”.

“This is worrying news for the North of Portugal and worrying for the whole country. We deeply regret this position of the British Government and hope that it will be rectified quickly. They did not take into account essential issues to assess the situation”, said Luís Pedro Martins, in statements to the Lusa agency.

Portugal was excluded from “international travel corridors” with tourist destinations that the United Kingdom will open to allow the British to spend their holidays without quarantining their return, it was confirmed today.

Portugal, where several outbreaks located in recent weeks have been identified, is not on the list of 59 countries and territories published today, which includes Spain, Germany, Greece, Italy, Macau or Jamaica.

For the President of TPNP, the UK authorities “did not identify precisely where the outbreaks are” of the outbreaks that have arisen in Portugal because, he said, “if they had done so they would have realized that they are not in the holiday destinations normally sought by the English”.

Other Travel news

Ryanair streamlines refunds for flights cancelled during confinement

Since the reopening of the company’s offices in Dublin on June 1, it has reinforced the team dedicated to managing refunds to eliminate order backlog.

According to the airline the figures include passengers who accepted free travel vouchers and / or travel changes for flights operated by Ryanair in July, August and September.

Ryanair asks all customers who have not yet received their refund to contact their travel agency’s customer service to ensure that the instructions sent in Ryanair’s notification emails have been followed and to confirm that the online travel agency is cooperating with Ryanair so that these requests can be processed.

Education

Next School Year will have More Class Time and Less Holidays

Students will have more days of classes and fewer vacation days in the next school year, announced today the Minister of Education, confirming that the return to schools will be in person.

“We have increased the number of school days for the next year, shortening, on the one hand, the Easter break and extending the duration of the school year to school years that are not subject to examination,” he explained.

Enforcement

The PSP detained a man and two women for disobedience in Elvas (Portalegre), following a gathering on the public road that involved more than 20 people contrary to the laws during the Covid-19 outbreak.

According to a statement by the District Command of Portalegre of the PSP, sent to the Lusa agency, the arrests took place in the early hours of Wednesday, when a group composed of more than 20 people gathered in the city of Raiana.

The PSP reports that, given the state of alert in force, in the context of the pandemic of covid-19, the initiative forced the intervention of the Police Division of Elvas, to disperse the group.

“The fact that the PSP’s order was not accepted by all resulted in the arrest of three individuals: one male and two female, for committing the crime of disobedience,” the statement said.

According to the PSP, the three detainees, aged between 21 and 39, were released and notified to appear in court, and the criminal investigation is ongoing.

PSP has 194 agents infected with the new coronavirus, 25 are recovering

One hundred and ninety-four policemen have been infected with covid-19, 169 of whom have already returned to service and 25 are in recovery, the national director of the Public Security Police said today.

“The strategy defined by the PSP made it possible to contain the number of cases of infected professionals and in prophylactic isolation, thus guaranteeing the sustainability of the operational response. Like our fellow citizens, we suffer the effects of infection among our ranks. We suffer because we are in cities where the large population clusters are concentrated. We had a total of 194 infected, of which 169, fortunately, have already recovered, with 25 infected today in recovery “, said Superintendent Manuel Magina da Silva, in the speech that marked 153. PSP’s anniversary.

The national director stressed that the PSP defined, at the beginning of the covid-19 pandemic, “a strategy to respond” to this threat, which included the creation of measures to prevent contagion among police officers, the acquisition of personal protective equipment, namely the individual distribution of a face shield, and the definition of a continuity plan for operational capacity to prepare the police for a long-term crisis.

Magina da Silva also noted that the strategy to combat the pandemic involves “the maximum readiness of all personnel”, definition of operational procedures that allow “knowing how to act and react on the ground” and raising citizens’ awareness of compliance with the rules defined in every moment and adoption of measures to speed up the testing of police suspected of being infected.

Other news

Technology

Use of .PT domain

The growing focus on digital has led .PT, responsible for managing the .pt top-level domain, to announce today that it accounted for a 26.35% increase in the first half of this year, to 49,985 new registrations, year on year.

In the first six months of this year, a “new historical record” of domains registered in .pt was reached, 10,432 more than in the same period last year, which since the beginning of the year has totaled 49,985 new registrations, says the .PT in a statement.

The evolution of new .pt registrations was notable in January, with 7,470 new registrations.

 

Region Reports

Maderia situation report Saturday 4th July by Daniel Fernandes

President of the Madeira Regional Government pleased with Madeira air corridor

Miguel Albuquerque, the President of the Madeira Regional Government is pleased with the United Kingdom’s decision to create an air corridor between England and Madeira. The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office deemed that Madeira no longer poses “an unacceptably high risk for British travellers”, which means it is exempt from advice against ‘all but essential’ international travel.

He said the Region’s strategy was the most correct and mentioned the joint work that was carried out. He added that this crucial development showed that the policies of testing on arrival and the public health checks were the most adequate.

He also mentioned the contacts the Regional Government held with the British Ambassador to Portugal and with the Portuguese Ambassador to the UK. He specifically thanked Turismo de Portugal, the Secretary of State for Tourism, the Foreign Ministry for their efforts in negotiating with the British authorities to ensure this successful outcome.

It is crucial that the British market is safeguarded because it is the main provider of international tourists to Madeira. Miguel Albuquerque revealed the two main UK tourism companies are already working to resume operations as soon as possible.

He appealed for the Madeira people to comply with all safety procedures, saying “it is a good that people are concerned, because this is a sign that they will continue to adopt preventive and prophylactic measures, particularly social distancing, the use of face masks and hygiene guidelines, all of which are crucial. He also reminded that the entire world, and especially Europe, is still in the middle of a pandemic. He warned against thinking the pandemic is over and stressed that Madeira “has a solution that matches the reopening of borders to tourists with the need for epidemic control and to prevent the creation of uncontrollable transmission chains.

He ended by saying he is confident that tourism in Madeira will recover if these concerns are addressed and if the mobile app is used for monitoring.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97671/Decisao_do_Reino_Unido_confirma_que_a_estrategia_da_Regiao_foi_a_mais_acertada_diz_Albuquerque

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-countries-and-territories-exempt-from-advice-against-all-but-essential-international-travel

Covid-19 update

There were no new Covid-19 cases yesterday. The number of cases remains 92, with 90 recoveries and 2 active cases. Both cases were detected on the 3rd week of June and the patients remain in isolation in a designated hotel, without requiring hospitalisation.

There are 340 people under active monitoring and 1,821 people in self-monitoring. Monitoring is being conducted through the MadeiraSafetoDiscover app. A suspected case was detected in Funchal Airport. Testing and an epidemiological investigation is underway. The traveller is in isolation at home in the Funchal Municipality. As of Thursday, there had been 1,547 suspected cases.

It was revealed that 957 tests have been carried out since the 1st of July, in the Region’s airports. Overall, a total of 2,043 samples were analysed in the last seven days. Since the start of the pandemic, 24,051 samples from 20,486 people have been analysed in the Madeira Autonomous Region.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 54 calls from Thursday to Friday while 292 calls were made in the last seven days. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,137.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,535 calls, with 150 people being monitored.

https://covidmadeira.pt/situacao-epidemiologica-na-ram-atualizacao-03-07-2020/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/03/ram-sem-novos-casos-de-covid-19/

PortoBay hotels to reopen

Today, PortoBay is reopening the following five hotels in Funchal: Les Suites at The Cliff Bay, The Cliff Bay, Eden Mar, Porto Mare and The Residence.

The hotels are operating under a reduced maximum capacity and more outdoor space. Grupo PortoBay ensures the safety and hygiene guidelines are rigorously complied with under the safety “Together We Care” safety protocol. It has a Clean & Safe certificate issued by Turismo de Portugal and certification by SGS.

There will be special rates, from €99 per room per day, for bookings made until the 20th of July, for stays between the 10th of July and the 31st of August.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97627/Grupo_PortoBay_reabre_hoteis_na_Madeira_

 

Algarve

More than 20 thousand tests in the Algarve made with a method that tests 10 people at once

The Algarve Biomedical Center (ABC) consortium has already carried out about 20,000 tests on Covid-19 using the pool method, which allows the detection of positive cases in groups of samples tested at once, the president, Nuno Marques, told Lusa.

The president of ABC – a consortium formed by the Hospital and University Center of the Algarve and the University of the Algarve, primarily responsible for testing Covid-19 in the region and in the Alentejo -, explained to the Lusa agency that this type of testing, which he called “sample” grouping “, allows you to test 10 people at once to see if there are positives.

According to Nuno Marques, instead of doing sample by sample tests, several samples are “grouped” and the “high sensitivity of the technique” of the method allows “to detect the existence of positive cases or inconclusive cases in the middle of a group”, increasing the capacity and speed of testing.

“The great benefit is that, during the same testing time, we can do 10 times more tests than those that could be done, greatly increasing laboratory capacity and giving a faster response,” he argued.

Afterwards, individual tests will only be carried out if the grouping sample proves to be positive, underlined Nuno Marques, stressing that, in case the group’s result is negative, everyone learns that they are without the disease.

“Basically, instead of being testing one by one, we make pools – we make groups – and we are testing 10 to 10”, synthesized Nuno Marques, noting that this testing method allows “to greatly increase the test capacity” and the ABC “there are already about 20,000 tests done this way”.

Nuno Marques said that ABC carried out studies to see how many samples he could test at once and found that the number of samples tested at one time could even be greater, but he guaranteed that, “for the sake of complete safety”, the option was for “making pools of 10 samples”.

Vila do Bispo maintains Blue Flag on all beaches

Eliche, Burgau, Cabanas Velhas, Castelejo, Cordoama, Ingrina, Mareta, Martinhal, Salema, Tonel and Zavial are the beaches that once again carry the Blue Flag, awarded by the Blue Flag Association of Europe (ABAE).

On June 30, the Blue Flags were hoisted on the beaches of the municipality of Vila do Bispo, in a symbolic ceremony that started in Burgau beach, in the presence of the councillors of the Vila do Bispo City Council, Rute Silva and Fernando Santana, from representative of the Portuguese Environment Agency (APA), Élia Cabrita, of the Captain of the Port of Lagos, Conceição Duarte, of the Lieutenant of the Maritime Delegation of Sagres, Costa Sousa, of the representative of the Natural Park of the Southwest Alentejo and Costa Vicentina, Luís Ferreira, and of the presidents of the parishes of Sagres and Vila do Bispo and Raposeira, Luís Paixão and Dino Lourenço, respectively.

As the municipality of Vila do Bispo records in a statement, the award of this award “attests to the quality of the bathing waters of the municipality, the support infrastructures and the information and environmental education actions carried out on the beaches, representing the fulfilment of a vast set criteria of environmental nature, safety and comfort of beach users “.

Salema beach also received the “Accessible Beach – Praia para Todos” flag, an award given by INR – National Institute for Rehabilitation, as it is a distinction that is attributed to bathing areas that fulfill a set of conditions, allowing its use by people with mobility difficulties, namely pedestrian access; orderly and reserved parking; access to the bathing area; treadmills on the beach; adapted sanitary facilities located in an easily accessible place; first aid services and lifeguards with specific training.

 

Situation Report Azores 3rd July – 4th July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

The autonomous Portuguese regions of the Azores and Madeira have been removed from what’s called the ‘Non-essential travel’ list because of their successes in combating the virus and their low infection rates but unfortunately, while travel to and from the regions isn’t a problem, passengers will still have to complete 14 days quarantine on return to the U.K. This takes effect from tomorrow, July the 4th and stays in place for the time being for all people arriving in the UK from Portugal, as a whole.

The Azores is handling the crisis well as can be seen by its performances since the first ‘positive’ “Covid-19” case was diagnosed here on the 15th of March.  In 831 tests, carried out in the last 24 hours, no new infections have been identified and to-date, 153 people have had virus.  132 of them recovered but sadly, 16 died, leaving just 5 ‘active’ cases; 4 on São Miguel and 1 on Terceira.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Portugal Situation Report Friday 3rd July

Introduction

Good morning Portugal – Well the media speculation concerning the so called UK traffic light system and whether or not Portugal will be included in the restricted countries continued apace yesterday. Plenty of quotations from politicians, but we await the official statement on this, whenever that may be. As we said yesterday, this is still speculation and nothing is certain until the official announcement is made. Let us wait and see.

If all this is making you feel hot under the collar you have felt nothing yet, with the IPMA forecasting temperature up to 40C in the next few days in some parts of Portugal. Yes I know it is summer but it is important to be reminded of the effects of this on health, especially for the elderly. We will be focusing on this over the next few days.

Yesterday I met with João Fernandes President of Regional Tourism Algarve in his office. Apart from discussing matters such as the re-opening of borders, tourism, the challenges the Algarve is currently facing, we also discussed “positive messages in times of crisis”. This is particularly important as fear, stress and pressures are natural in such times.  Our thoughts are similar on that issue, as when we have to deal with often challenging and difficult times, having positive thoughts can make people feel better and help with recovery.  Regional Tourism Algarve used this strategy during the Monchique fires of 2018, and Safe Communities is using the same strategy in the context of Covid-19. We therefore invite everyone to visit our “Positive Messages” page which is a selection of those very positive messages many of you have made over the last 4 months.

Lastly we wish to remind everyone on the mandatory use of masks or visors, under the terms of article 13-B of Decree-Law no. 10-A / 2020, of 13 March. Non- compliance can now be subject to a fine of 100 to 500 Euros in the case of individuals and 1000 to 5000 Euros in the case of corporations. The latter could be when a supermarket for instance is not enforcing this provision. We will post a reminder on Facebook today to help make people more aware.

Lastly from time to time people comment with allegations against certain companies that they may not be following the law concerning Facemasks and social distancing, say for instance allowing too many people in. In such cases speak with management at the time. Allegations on our Facebook page against named companies will be removed for legal reasons. If you witness non-compliance either speak to the management or contact the police.

Have a Safe but certainly Hot day!

DGS Covd-19 Statistics

Portugal recorded eight deaths and 328 new cases of covid-19 infection from Wednesday to Thursday. Altogether, there are 42782 persons infected and 1587 deaths. There are 299 more recovered.

Of the 328 new cases, 273 were confirmed in the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo region (19,656 in total, with 480 deaths, five more than the previous day.  According to the epidemiological bulletin released this Thursday by DGS, the Lisbon region has 83% of new cases , a percentage higher than the 69.6% recorded on Wednesday.

In the North region, there are 17624 cases of infection, 39 more than on Wednesday, which represents 11.9% of the total new cases this Thursday. The North did not add new deaths, maintaining the same 819.

The Center region did not register any new cases in the last 24 hours, keeping the 4121 patients, but added one death (249 in total). The Alentejo recorded eight new infections (499) and two more deaths (nine in total). The Algarve, on the other hand, has seven more patients (639), but has not registered new deaths (it remains at 15 the same for nearly a month).

The Azores have a new infected (151) and the same 15 deaths. Madeira maintains the 92 cases and has not registered any deaths s

 Health

There are 33 cases of Covid-19 among Lisbon City Hall officials

According to the vice-president of the municipality, it is a question of “a group of people” that will not have followed the established rules, a situation that was not “properly managed by the leaders” and that “is being evaluated and monitored”.

The Lisbon Chamber currently registers 33 cases of Covid-19 infection “active”, in a total of 53 positive cases, 20 of whom have recovered, the vice-president of the municipality announced this Thursday.

At a public meeting of the municipal executive, João Paulo Saraiva said that the increase in numbers is due to a focus on the cleaning post in Telheiras, however, it does not say how many workers were infected.

“The municipality of Lisbon had figures that were well below national figures until a week ago, but there was a focus that has already been addressed, evaluated, studied and is being followed,” said the mayor, in response to a question from PSD councilman João Pedro Costa.

Minister of Health full confidence in health leadership in the Lisbon region

In an interview with RTP, Marta Temido Minister of Health underlined that “if there is a need to make changes” in the heads of the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo region, that will “be done”. Even so, at this moment, those responsible and the Directorate-General for Health maintain the minister’s full confidence

Marta Temido admits that the heads of the health teams that coordinate the covid-19 operation in the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo region may undergo changes in the future. In an interview with RTP, on Wednesday night, the Minister of Health still left the guarantee that they are trusted by the Directorate-General for Health, which in turn is trusted by the Ministry. “If there is a need to make changes, they will be made, but we also have to allow time for the evolution to happen”, she stated.

Her response came after she was confronted by criticism from Fernando Medina, Mayor of Lisbon, who criticized the way in which the teams worked and coordinated to fight the pandemic. “We cannot say that the leaders in our country, in the area of ​​public health, are incompetent. I think the mayor has already specified the meaning of his statements replied the Minister. “It is natural that in times of pressure, where people are put to work with teams that they do not know and are taken to expose their weaknesses, whoever is outside is surprised by some aspects that we have”, she continued.

Care Home in Alcabideche has 45 infected users

The number of infected users of the São Vicente home, in Alcabideche, in the municipality of Cascais, rises to 45, the source of the municipality confirmed to Renascença.

The institution has 71 users, of whom 45 tested positive for the new coronavirus, 25 negative and one was inconclusive.

Cascais Town Hall source also revealed that employees are being tested this Thursday.

This is the second case in a few days of patients covid-19 in homes in the municipality of Cascais, after, on Monday, the Directorate-General for Health (DGS) reported an outbreak in a home in São Domingos de Rana.

In this home, 41 of the 46 users are infected with the new coronavirus, as well as six professionals from that residential structure, with one death registered.

Reguengos de Monsaraz Council activates Municipal Emergency Plan

The Reguengos de Monsaraz Chamber (Évora) yesterday activated the Municipal Emergency Plan to manage the covid-19 outbreak in the municipality, since most of mainland Portugal came into situation alert on Wednesday.

“With the end of the calamity situation”, which was in force in the country until Tuesday, the municipal emergency plans, which were automatically activated throughout the national territory, “ceased to be in force,” the president told the Lusa agency today.

For this reason, in view of the covid-19 outbreak in the municipality, which appeared on June 18, at the Maria Inácia Vogado Perdigão Silva Foundation Home (FMIVPS), which has caused eight deaths to date and has 138 active cases. , the municipality decided to activate its emergency plan, having met today the Municipal Civil Protection Commission.

Fisheries

Fishermen of the Xávega da Costa da Caparica receive safety training related to Covid-19

The Minister of the Sea, Ricardo Serrão Santos, accompanied by the Secretary of State for Fisheries, José Apolinário, the councillor of the Almada City Council, Francisca Parreira, and the President of the Parish Council of Costa da Caparica, José Martins, delivered protective equipment individually to about 50 fishermen of Xávega da Costa da Caparica.

The equipment was delivered within the scope of the awareness and information session on good safety practices related to Covid-19 given by the Portuguese Navy.

These actions, with the support of the Navy, have been carried out in order to ensure that fishing professionals from north to the South of the country are informed about the security measures to be adopted to prevent the spread of the disease.

Travel

RENA criticizes extension of air traffic restrictions

RENA – Association of Airlines in Portugal yesterday considered that the extension of restrictions on flights to and from countries outside the European Union or the Schengen Area as an “inadequate and ineffective” measure.

On June 30, the Government approved air traffic measures, effective from today and until July 16, allowing flights to and from Portugal to countries of the “European Union, Schengen Area and the United Kingdom”.

There are also no longer flights to certain countries f where important Portuguese communities reside.

RENA understands that this decision “starts from an assumption (the coincidence between the country of origin and the nationality of the passengers) that often does not occur, preventing the return of Portuguese citizens and the activity of several foreign airlines that are prevented from operating from Portugal”.

The association that represents 19 airlines operating in Portugal also considers that the decision is “contradictory with the efforts that have been (correctly) made by the Government to relaunch national tourism”.

Thus, RENA proposes lifting restrictions and replacing them with measures restricting the entry of passengers according to their nationality or residence, and not prohibitions by origin or destination of the flight, imposing a duty on airlines not to transport citizens of third countries that do not meet the eligibility criteria set by the Government.

Dutch travel advice updated 1st July

This is useful to those flying to and from Netherlands and Portugal

Travel advice Portugal Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Last modified on: 01-07-2020

“Currently, there is a local outbreak of the coronavirus in the regions around Porto (Portugal Norte) and Lisbon (Lisboa e Vale do Tejo). The color of these areas has therefore been adjusted on the map from ‘yellow’ (note: safety risks) to ‘orange’ (necessary travel only). If you return to the Netherlands from these regions, it is urgent to quarantine yourself for 14 days. Portugal again allows tourist travelers who come by plane and by car. When traveling by air, you may be checked for symptoms upon arrival at the airport. The Azores and Madeira have different measures from the mainland. You must submit a negative corona test there that is not older than 72 hours. You can go on holiday to Portugal, the Azores and Madeira but stay vigilant. Always follow the Dutch and local corona rules. For more information, see the ‘Coronavirus’ section.”

Leisure

Itinerant Entertainment entrepreneurs Protest to Council of Ministers

About three dozen itinerant entertainment entrepreneurs yesterday concentrated in front of the Council of Ministers, which taook place at the Ajuda Palace, in Lisbon, demanding a response from the Government to resume the activity.

The president of the newly created Association of Certified Itinerant Professionals (APIC), Luís Fernandes said he “did not understand” why the activity cannot start over.

According to Luís Fernandes, businessmen are “from yesterday to now” waiting and reiterating the formulation of a “positive health protocol, as required by the article”.

“If the opinion of the health rules is positive and exists, we don’t understand. We were waiting all day for a meeting with the Secretary of State for Tourism or with the Minister of Economy”, he said.

Luìs Fernandes explained that the activity intends to open “in small parks, a carousel here and another 100 meters away” and outdoors, stressing that there are closed activities that have already opened, as in the case of cinemas.

“Right now, it is no longer a matter of pressure, but a matter of law enforcement. The politicians are ignoring, they are not responding in time”, he added.

Lisbon Approves Motion to Study Reopening of Nightclubs

The Lisbon Chamber yesterday approved a motion that urges the Government to study the reopening of bars and clubs with the same rules applied to restaurants and without dance floors.

“The definition of the seating capacity, the elimination of dance floors and cloakrooms and the measurement of temperature are some of the rules that can and should be adopted in these establishments”, reads in the motion presented by the CDS-PP.

For centrist councilors, “with rules, the monitoring of compliance and the establishment of sanctions for those who do not comply, it is possible to reopen bars and clubs, establishing a closing time that should be at 2:00 am for bars and at 4 am for the nightclubs”.

Firefighters

The Portuguese Firefighters League yesterday asked the Assembly of the Republic to approve, within the scope of the amending budget, support measures for humanitarian associations to guarantee their “sustainability and survival” due to financial problems they face.

This is one of the points contained in a motion approved by the national council of the League of Portuguese Firefighters (LBP), which met in Pombal to analyze the current financial situation of firefighters due to the covid-19 pandemic.

In the motion, the LBP requires the Government to replace the monies spent by each corporation on the purchase of Personal Protective Equipment to combat covid-19, as well as “an urgent revision” of the Law on Financing of the Humanitarian Associations of Voluntary Firemen, as entities holding the fire brigades.

This structure also asks the Government for an “immediate reinforcement” of the reference budget to 35 million euros to support humanitarian associations “to overcome the tremendous financial difficulties they are facing”.

The LBP also requires “the immediate payment of the Ministry of Health’s debts to firefighters”, relating to the transport of non-urgent and urgent patients whose debt value exceeds 30 million euros.

Enforcement

Covid-19: Tax authorities seize 550 boxes of anti-flu medicine banned in Portugal

The Tax and Customs Authority (AT) seized, through the Customs of Leixões, 550 boxes of anti-flu drugs, the marketing of which is not authorized on the Portuguese market, allegedly used as drugs for covid-19.

The drugs, according to a statement released by AT, were camouflaged in boxes presented as containing LED lamps, with origin declared in Hong Kong.

According to the same information, these are “anti-flu drugs marketed in the Chinese market, allegedly used as drugs for covid-19” and which, according to AT, “have repeatedly been the subject of illegal import attempts by other means, namely by post”.

This inspection operation was carried out under the auspices of the World Customs Organization, having been carried out by the Customs of Leixões based on the risk analysis developed by AT.

The 550 seized medicine boxes contained 19,800 individual doses.

Region Reports

Madeira Situation Report by Daniel Fernandes

Covid-19 update

There were no new Covid-19 cases yesterday. The number of cases remains 92, with 90 recoveries and 2 active cases. Both cases were detected on the 3rd week of June and the patients remain in isolation in a designated hotel, without requiring hospitalisation.

There are 340 people under active monitoring and 1,304 people in self-monitoring. A suspected case was detected in Funchal Airport. Testing and an epidemiological investigation is underway. The traveller is in isolation at home in the Funchal Municipality. As of Thursday, there had been 1,547 suspected cases.

As for Covid-19 testing, 23,460 samples from 20,418 people have been analysed at Laboratório de Patologia Clínica do SESARAM (Madeira Health Service lab). And yesterday, 340 samples were collected for Covid-19 testing at Funchal Airport.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 67 calls from Wednesday to Thursday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,083.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,525 calls, with 149 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/02/detectado-um-caso-suspeito-de-covid-19-no-aeroporto-o-mesmo-encontra-se-em-estudo/

First TAP aircraft landed in Porto Santo

A TAP aircraft landed in Porto Santo Airport for the first time since it reopened for flights. The TAP flight had flown about 120 passengers from Lisbon. There were two clearly visible lanes, one for passengers with evidence of a negative Covid-19 test and another for passengers who had to be tested. Many passengers had paper or digital evidence of a negative Covid-19 test. The next TAP flight to Porto Santo is scheduled to take place on Sunday and will also carry about 120 passengers.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97575/Primeiro_aviao_da_TAP_aterrou_no_Porto_Santo_apos_a_reabertura_do_aeroporto

Hotel Dom Pedro Madeira to reopen on the 16th of July

Dom Pedro Madeira-Ocean Beach Hotel will reopen on the 16th of July. This is yet another Madeira hotel that is reopening in July and will end the reopening process of all Dom Pedro Hotels & Gold Collection branches in Madeira. This specific hotel is located on the eastern coast of the island, next to the beautiful Machico bay. The hotel is 50 metres away from Banda D’Além Beach, can be accessed through the promenade, is 5 minutes away from Madeira Airport and 25 minutes away from the Funchal city centre.

Grupo Dom Pedro (hotel chain) set up and implemented an internal procedure booklet containing all safety and prevention measures, based on the Directorate-General of Health (DGS) and Turismo de Portugal guidelines. These include purchasing equipment, Covid-19 signage and further disinfection of public spaces, restaurant, swimming pool, bedrooms and corridors. Compliance with these procedures allowed the hotel to be awarded the Turismo de Portugal’s Clean & Safe seal and certified the hotel as a safe place for its staff and customers.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97490/Hotel_Dom_Pedro_Madeira_reabre_dia_16_de_julho

Possible bus services disruptions this morning

Grupo Horários do Funchal (Madeira bus company) announced there could be some bus services disruptions between 11h00 and 13h30, due to a staff plenary meeting organised by Syndicate Nacional dos Motoristas (a trade union). This meeting will take place in a HF station in Fundoa between 11h00 and 13h30.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97498/Horarios_do_Funchal_alerta_para_possiveis_constrangimentos_nas_carreiras_entre_as_11h00_e_as_13h00_devido_a_um_plenario_de_trabalhadores

 

Algarve

Municipality of Silves reminds bathers “that the virus does not take a vacation

In the time of COVID-19, and with the arrival of yet another bathing season, the Municipality of Silves continues to invest in raising awareness among the population and holidaymakers to maintain protection and safety care against the coronavirus during vacation time.

In a statement, the municipality said that information panels were installed at all accesses to the municipality’s beaches, warning signs for the importance of safety distance, guidance signs and right-of-way traffic guidance and flip-flop stickers in order to facilitate and guide the circulation in the accesses to the beaches.

These measures are part of a protection and security awareness campaign against COVID-19, promoted by the Municipality of Silves, for the adoption of responsible behaviours and for the importance of maintaining protective and safety care, remembering that the virus does not take a vacation.

Albufeira Town Council has 1 million euros to help companies in the municipality

The Municipality of Albufeira today announced that it created the Business and Associative Support Fund for the municipality, with an allocation of one million euros, a measure to support companies with a tax address or head office in the municipality of Albufeira whose establishments were forced to close, under the law, or not being closed, they suffered abrupt declines in their productivity.

Applications must be submitted by July 15 (by email age@cm-albufeira.pt) using a specific form. Eligible activities are catering and the like, trade in retail goods, service provision and industry and agriculture.

Underlying this measure of the Municipality of Albufeira, is the intention to mitigate the losses of companies, supporting them in the resumption of the activity and in the maintenance of jobs related to them, as a means of safeguarding the economic and social sector of the municipality.

The Business and Associative Support Fund has an allocation of one million euros and is aimed at individual entrepreneurs or companies with fiscal residence or head office in the municipality of Albufeira, who have not benefited from other non-refundable state financial support, within the scope of of the Covid-19 pandemic.

In order to apply, entrepreneurs must not have had a turnover in 2019 greater than 150 thousand euros, and must demonstrate that they have had their activity open for at least 8 consecutive months in 2019.

Support beneficiaries are obliged to keep their activity open and to maintain existing jobs at the date of submission of the application until December 31, 2020, with the exception of those who carry out seasonal activities, who are expected to maintain activity in 2020 for the same months that were open in 2019, at least, until October 31, 2020.

Lagos refurbishes lighting at Avenida dos Pescadores in Vila da Luz

Vila da Luz seafront, which frames the beach and the view of Rocha Negra, is one of the main attractions of this old fishing village.

Committed to its enhancement, the Municipality of Lagos developed a work to refurbish the public lighting of this public promenade area.

Recently completed, the work not only the replacement of lighting and their redistribution in space, but also the creation of telecommunications infrastructures, taking advantage of the opening of trenches to provide the infrastructure for the ITUR network (telecommunications infrastructures in subdivisions, urbanizations and sets of buildings).

The contract cost 148313.50 euros (plus VAT).

Albufeira: Café was used to sell drugs

The Criminal Investigation Nucleus (NIC) of the GNR of Albufeira, detained last Tuesday, four men and one woman, aged between 37 and 49 years, for drug trafficking and reception, in Albufeira.

The arrests took place as part of an investigation, which began about 11 months ago, for drug trafficking and receiving stolen items. According to a statement from the GNR, the suspects were operating a café where they sold drugs to customers, «and which, at the same time, would serve to” launder “the financial profits obtained illegally from the sale of narcotics».

This group was mainly dedicated to heroin trafficking and also developed its criminal activity in the municipalities of Portimão, Silves and Lagoa. As a form of payment in exchange for the drug, in addition to money, they also received from some customers, jewellery and several other stolen items.

In the course of the investigation process, the Guard military carried out three home search warrants, one search warrant for the establishment, three arrest warrants for non-flagrant offenses and three search warrants for vehicles, with the seizure of the following material: 13 703 doses of heroin; 1,211 doses of MDMA; 90 doses of cocaine; 17 thousand euros in cash; 500 grams in gold; a vehicle; a bicycle; three precision scales; five televisions and ten mobile phones.

Situation Report Azores 2nd July – 3rd July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

A 2.4 magnitude earthquake (very small) on the Richter scale was felt this morning on Terceira island.  The epicentre was about 6 km from Lajes base.

The Regional Health Authority reports that the 914 tests carried out in the two reference laboratories in the Region in the last 24 hours did not reveal new positive cases of COVID-19.

To-date, 153 people have been infected with the virus since the first ‘positive’ case was discovered in the Azores on the 15th of March.  132 of them have recovered but sadly, 16 died, leaving 5 ‘active’ cases; 4 on São Miguel and 1 on Terceira.

 

Portugal Situation Report Thursday 2nd July 2020

Introduction

Good Morning Portugal – Continuing from our last report, the main focus of yesterday’s news was the reopening of the border with Spain. The official ceremony was held in Badajoz and Elvas officiated by President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, King Felipe VI and the heads of the Portuguese and Spanish Governments, António Costa and Pedro Sánchez. In addition there was a local ceremony at the Guadiana International Bridge attended by local officials.

Although the borders return to the position they were prior to the State of Emergency, the Ministry of Internal Affairs said yesterday that mobile checks of random and temporary nature will be carried out on buses and coaches (collective transport of passengers), motorhomes and light vehicles in Valence, Quintanilha, Velar Formosa, Ceia and Castro Marim. Clearly there will be many in the tourism industry whose livelihoods have suffered a great deal during the lockdown period so this move will be widely welcomed. It is also very important to remember that there are Spanish residents in the Algarve, around 1300, who were eager to see their families.

Inevitably there will also be concerns by some that this could result in infections being carried across borders – this is understandable. The situation will be closely monitored by governments on both sides of the border, but what is more important is, that if everyone, both visitors and residents abide by the rules, then the risk of spreading of the diseases vastly decreases. All of us have a role to play in this and if you become aware of a gathering of more than 20 people, then report it – the GNR have already taken action upon receipt of reports and will continue to do so.

In celebrating the reunion between the two countries, unfortunately there were a few on our Facebook page yesterday stigmatising those from across the border – we have removed these. There is a strong bond between the Portuguese and Spanish people which should be respected. Because someone is foreign visiting from overseas, that does not mean they are carrying the disease – statistically most unlikely. Should there be an increase in confirmed cases, then Portugal is far better equipped in every way to deal with this. Portugal cannot remain in isolation from the rest of Europe. On the subject of borders, we published yesterday Governments’s decree law concerning air flights to outside of the EU, please read this on out International flights page.

AND FINALLY – To help avoid sleepless nights, I would suggest ignore all the media hype concerning air bridges – traffic lights etc.  Just wait until the official announcement and details are published! As soon as we know, we will publish this.

Turning to rural fires, another important reminder is that the Critical Fire Period commenced yesterday. This means there are various changes and restrictions in place REGARDLESS of the actual rural fire risk in your area. These are shown in the chart which was produced in English in a joint collaborative initiative between Safe Communities Portugal, the IPMA and ICNF and shown daily on the IPMAA website. Please monitor this each day from our website. It is also possible to obtain full details of the risk and various rural fires statistics relating to your municipality sent to you daily by email.

WE ALSO ASK for those of you who are managing AL accommodation, arranging outdoor activities and other activities where people are likely to be venturing into rural areas, to ensure both staff and clients are aware of this fire risk and what to do should a fire break out. Property management companies and owners of rented accommodation have a responsibility to ensure the safety of their clients.

Lastly I would like to thank Jennie Kelly our volunteer who is now helping with our website taking some of the workload off myself and Elise.

Headlines

Reopening of the borders between Portugal and Spain

“For all the generations that were born and raised with Portugal and Spain as partners in the European Union, the closing of the borders was a unique moment that we do not want to happen again,” said Prime Minister António Costa in a joint statement to the press with the Spanish Government President, Pedro Sanchez, in Elvas, after the Portuguese part of the border reopening ceremony, which was officiated by the Heads of State, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa and Felipe VI.

The Prime Minister said that “this is the oldest border in Europe, which we have symbolically reopened by visiting two fortresses that we have built to separate for centuries. Nothing better than going back to the milestones of history to symbolize this common desire to meet and return to be very close neighbours”.

António Costa said that today’s Europe, which “is trying to see what its economic response to the crisis created by the pandemic will look like”, “needs a positive message from these two countries that do not see the opening of borders as a threat, but as an opportunity for common development”.

DGS Covid-19 Situation

The Directorate-General for Health (DGS) announced this Wednesday the existence of 1,579 deaths and 42,454 cases of covid-19 in Portugal since the beginning of the pandemic.

Portugal today registers three more deaths caused by the covid-19 than on Tuesday and 313 more infected, about 70% of whom were in the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo region

In the Lisbon and Vale do Tejo region, where the greatest number of outbreaks has been recorded, and the covid-19 pandemic reached 19,383 cases yesterday, 218 more than on Tuesday.

Minister of Health up date to the Assembly of the Republic

The Minister of Health, who was speaking at the Assembly of the Republic yesterday, revealed that 29 new specialists will be hired in August.

Speaking to the Parliamentary Health Committee, Marta Temido said that the public health workforce “has long since needed to be strengthened” and that “the amount and diversity of skills needs to be increased” in the National Health Service.

At the beginning of the hearing, Marta Temido said that hospitals had, until May, 902,000 fewer consultations and 85,000 fewer surgeries compared to the same period last year. Of the less than 902 thousand hospital consultations, 371 thousand were first consultations, added the minister, stressing the need to recover the activities suspended by the pandemic.

The minister also highlighted the need to reinforce efforts to “break the transmission chains” in the region of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo and analyze what went well and improve what went wrong, remembering that the covid-19 “will not disappear until there is vaccine or treatment “.

She praised the good response of the National Health Service and health professionals, considering them “the best guarantor of the satisfaction of the assistance needs of the Portuguese”. And, on the SNS24 Line, she stressed that the average waiting time today is 28 seconds, after having reached 25 minutes in the first months of the pandemic.

SNS professionals who caught covid will earn bonus and vacation

This Wednesday, unanimously, the deputies approved a PSD proposal that attributes a performance bonus equivalent to 50% of the remuneration to the workers of the National Health Service and increased vacation.

The performance bonus is paid only once and corresponds to “the amount equivalent to 50% of the employee’s basic monthly remuneration”. This year will be attributed to “all SNS professionals who, during the state of emergency and their renewals, exercised functions  in the SNS and have practiced, in this period, in a continuous and relevant way, acts directly related with suspects and patients infected with covid-19 “, determines the proposal.

It was also approved, also without votes against or abstentions, an increase in vacation days for these professionals – which means that workers will have “one vacation day for each period of 80 hours of normal work” and “one vacation day for each period of 48 hours of overtime “provided during” the period in which the public calamity situation that justified the declaration of the state of emergency was verified “.

Both holidays and the performance bonus will be regulated by a law within 30 days after approval of the Supplementary State Budget.

The Minister of Infrastructure and Housing, Pedro Nuno Santos, stated that the Government has the objective of “ensuring that the best practices of security and protection of public health continue to be followed” in suburban rail transport in the Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon.

Monitoring of sense of smell due to Pandemic

Portugal, through the Champalimaud Center, in Lisbon, has joined a project created in Israel that allows people to monitor olfaction on an Internet platform, the loss of which is one of the symptoms of 19, the institution announced today.

The SmellTracker algorithm allows people to map their perception of smell from five groups of smells commonly available at home, such as coffee, tea, juice, honey, cinnamon, onion, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, mustard, boiled egg, canned, perfume, shampoo, laundry detergent, soap, sunscreen, aromatic herbs or soy sauce.

Sudden changes in the perception of smell can be an indicator of infection by the coronavirus that causes covid-19 respiratory disease.

Infarmed guarantees stocks of Remdesivir for Patients

In response to concerns Infarmed yesterday guaranteed that there is “remdesivir available stock” in Portugal (USA bought almost the entire world reserve for three months)

We can inform you that there is a stock of remdesivir available, according to the allocations that have been made to our country, constituting a first reservation that guarantees immediate access to the medicine”.

The certificate is given by Infarmed that, “after contacting the laboratory that holds the drug, it confirms that it anticipates that there will be no constraint on access to treatment by Portuguese patients” of covid-19.

Transport

Ensuring best safety practices on public transport

In the Assembly of the Republic, during discussion of the topic “The response to Covid-19 in Greater Lisbon in transport and housing”, the Minister underlined three priorities: “That the trains are properly sanitized, that the people who travel in them always use the mask and that the distribution of people by the carriages avoids unnecessary crowds”.

Pedro Nuno Santos also stressed the goal of “seeking at all times the best balance between the need to use public transport to live and work and the right to do so in safety and tranquillity”.

The Minister underlined that “from the global point of view, there is no shortage of trains on urban lines in Greater Lisbon.”Demand is still much lower than in the period before the pandemic and the capacity for two thirds is fulfilled in the overwhelming majority of trains, even during rush hour,” he added.

With regard to the Sintra line in particular, the Minister said that a working group was created between Infrastructures of Portugal and CP to study in the coming months a way to inject “at least one more train per hour on the Sintra line” .

Lisbon Metropolitan area reinforces public transport

The Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon (AML) reinforces the capacity of public transport, especially buses, as of today, allowing the capacity to be 90% of what existed at the same period last year.

According to AML’s first secretary, Carlos Humberto, “the idea is to have a capacity of about 90%” in relation to the existing capacity in the same period last year, but there may be reinforcements “in what may be necessary”, namely in the “lines that bring passengers to the capital, Lisbon

In the case of Metropolitano de Lisboa, the reinforcement took place on Saturday with the doubling of the capacity on weekends, during the daytime, on the Blue, Green and Red lines, circulating trains with six carriages.

Further, the Minister of Health said today that public transport is not associated with any of the new cases of infection in the region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley (LVT).

Cascais reiterates health screen for incoming Transport

The Mayor of Cascais, Carlos Carreiras, reiterated today to make a “health screen” for intercity road transport that circulates in the municipality if the capacity is not 100% by the end of this week.

“The only way that is in my legal powers and my legal authority is, in fact, to break the agreement with the Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon in the sense that these inter-municipal carriers are no longer able to enter the territory of Cascais and the borders of neighboring municipalities”, said the mayor.

Borders

PM Calls for Covid-19 Restriction Compliance to Avoid Further Border Closure

The Portuguese Prime Minister, António Costa, today called for the “very strict” compliance with all the safety and health rules against the covid-19 to avoid the possibility of the borders between Portugal and Spain to close again.

For the head of the Portuguese Government, until there is “a vaccine with an effective treatment” it is necessary that everyone bear in mind “the risk of covid-19”, the disease caused by the new coronavirus.

Algarve-Andalusia reconnected through Guadiana Bridge

Passage across the Portuguese-Spanish border of the international bridge of the Guadiana is already taking place today without any limitation after three and a half months due to the covid-19 pandemic, with vehicles circulating between the Algarve and Andalusia.

At 00:00, the Portuguese and Spanish police and customs forces lifted the checkpoints that, during the period of confinement due to the pandemic, were installed next to the bridge to allow only the transport of goods, national citizens or cross-border workers to pass.

Thirty-six people were arrested and close to 6,800 were prevented from entering Portugal in the three and months in which the borders with Spain were closed, the Ministry of Internal Administration (MAI) revealed today.

Enforcement

GNR Detain 6 in Vilar Formoso

GNR detained six people at the border of Vilar Formoso during the operation “Fronteira Vigiada”, which took place between 16 March and 30 June, with the closure of the borders due to the pandemic of covid-19.

During the action “Fronteira Vigiada”, the GNR detained in Vilar Formoso, in the municipality of Almeida, district of Guarda, six people for crimes related to drug trafficking, illegal stay in national territory and illegal possession of weapons, the colonel revealed today Cunha Rasteiro, commander of the Territorial Command of GNR da Guarda.

According to Cunha Rasteiro, in the operation carried out by GNR with the collaboration and support of the Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF), the Territorial Command of GNR da Guarda engaged 1,958 military personnel, carried out 946 actions and carried out 35 drone flights on the line border of the district of Guarda (which has a length of 100 kilometers, ranging from Barca d´Alva – Figueira de Castelo Rodrigo, to Foios – Sabugal).

GNR to be more aware of gatherings and alcohol consumption in Public

GNR today warned of the new regime of administrative offenses associated with situations of calamity, contingency and alert due to covid-19, advancing that it will be attentive to the gathering of people and consumption of alcoholic beverages in public spaces.

This security force recalls that the violation of these rules is subject to a fine that varies between 100 and 500 euros, in the case of natural persons, and between 1,000 and 5,000 euros, in the case of corporations.

Other News

Government will monitor hate speech on the Internet

The Government will monitor hate speech on online platforms, being “in the process” of initiating public procurement of a project that should translate into a monthly barometer for monitoring and identifying sites.

According to the Minister of State and the Presidency, Mariana Vieira da Silva, the objective is to understand aspects such as the form of propagating this discourse on online platforms, the messages it contains, identifying authors, monitoring complaints processes, among other aspects.

The information was advanced this Wednesday in parliament, where the minister and her governing team were being heard by the parliamentary committee on Constitutional Affairs, Rights, Freedoms and Guarantees, in a hearing.

Mariana Vieira da Silva replied to deputy Joacine Katar Moreira, who asked the question about what the Government was doing in relation to the growth of hate speech, and the minister also said that what is intended to be removed from the project are data that support lines political action and training for all actors who have to deal with the matter.

On discrimination and racism, he said that the Commission for Equality and Against Racial Discrimination (CICDR) has registered “a very significant increase in complaints, of the most varied types, of political actors as well”, with cases being referred to the Public Ministry.

Region Reports

Madeira Report – By Daniel Pernandes

Exceptional results after 425 passengers landed at Madeira Airport

Yesterday, four flights operated by TAP, EasyJet and Azores Air Lines, from Lisbon, Porto and Azores and carrying a total of 425 passengers, landed at Madeira Airport (Funchal). This was on the same day the new entry control system went into place, in which passengers who do not provide evidence of a negative Covid-19 test must be tested on arrival. More than half of the passengers (243) were moved into a separate area where they were tested after a waiting time of about 5 minutes. They had to wait for 12h before the health authorities informed them of the test result, while staying in voluntary confinement at home or in hotels.

Madeira Airport (in Funchal) is currently able to carry out 250 Covid-19 tests per hour on passengers who had not been tested before traveling to Madeira. However, if necessary, the Madeira health authorities have the means to increase the hourly testing capacity. An increase in testing capacity is already expected, although it is likely that more and more passengers will be able to present evidence of a negative Covid-19 test carried out before departure.

There is a “blue lane” for passengers who must be tested at the Arrivals entrance and a “green lane” for those in possession of evidence of a negative test carried out within 72 hours or who are exempt from this rule (such as children aged under 12).

According to Eduardo Jesus (Madeira Tourism Secretary), the local authorities had the opportunity to carry out real-life simulations and training, such as a simulation last week and a Transavia flight from Paris via Porto on Saturday. A number of details were adjusted when a flight from Lisbon landed on Tuesday. All team are well prepared, there is clearer signage and the space separating the green and blue lane is more evident. He added that this is mega-operation involving the regional health authority in cooperation with the Regional Secretariat for Tourism and Culture and the Madeira Promotion Bureau. He said Madeira “is under big scrutiny, not only from visitors but also from the national media” and “this is not only a responsibility but also an opportunity to show Madeira’s commitment in this reopening stage and in restarting tourism.”

According to Herberto Jesus, the president of IASAÚDE (Madeira Health Institute), the experience on the first day was “very good and without big disruptions or gatherings, because everything was well-planned, ensuring the safety of our population and visitors”. He added that passengers had identified the different lanes, the information was adequate and testing was carried out in record timing. He finished by saying “this is a happy day for the Madeira Autonomous Region.”

More good news were to follow after Eduardo Jesus said the region is scheduled to have 30% of the flights it had in July 2019, 46% of the flights it had in August 2019 and 50% of the flights it had in September 2009.

He added that the British Embassy in Lisbon had informed the Madeira Regional Government it had accepted its argument that the epidemiological situation in Madeira is not comparable to the situation in the Mainland, in addition to the fact there are direct flights from the UK to Madeira. The Regional Government have also presented a similar view to the Danish authorities in order to keep the direct flight from Denmark to Porto Santo, an island that has been free from Covid-19 for several weeks.

Today, flights from the Netherlands and Germany are scheduled to resume.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97444/Resultados_excecionais_no_dia_em_que_425_passageiros_desembarcaram_no_Aeroporto_da_Madeira

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97442/Covid-19_Eduardo_Jesus_afirma_que_reabertura_dos_aeroportos_na_Regiao_esta_a_decorrer_bem

Covid-19 update

There were no new Covid-19 cases yesterday. The number of cases remains 92, with 90 recoveries and 2 active cases. Both cases were detected on the 3rd week of June and the patients remain in isolation in a designated hotel, without requiring hospitalisation.

The highlight was the arrival of 425 passengers at Funchal Airport, 243 of whom were tested for Covid-19 on the spot while the remaining passengers either presented evidence of a negative test or were exempt from the new testing legislation.

There are 369 people under active monitoring and 1,353 people in self-monitoring. As of Wednesday, there had been 1,546 suspected cases, 1,454 of which had come back negative.

As for Covid-19 testing, 23,026 samples from 20,334 people have been analysed at Laboratório de Patologia Clínica do SESARAM (Madeira Health Service lab).

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 52 calls from Tuesday to Wednesday. Overall, the total number of calls made to this helpline is 9,016.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (219 212 399 – available every day from 9h00 to 21h00) that was set up to provide emotional and mental support to Madeira residents has received 1,518 calls, with 148 people being monitored.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2020/07/01/243-passageiros-testados-para-covid-19-hoje-no-aeroporto-ram-mantem-apenas-2-casos-activos/

Hotel Golden Residence and Hotel Meliá Madeira Mare reopened

Hotel Golden Residence and Hotel Meliá Madeira Mare reopened yesterday. Hotel Golden Residence is a four-star hotel located in Funchal, has panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean and double rooms and apartments with a small kitchen. Hotel Meliá Madeira Mare is located in Lido, also offers excellent views of the Atlantic Ocean and has direct access to the promenade and Gorgulho beach.

Hotel Golden Residence is taking part in the “Welcome Back” scheme until the 12th of July. This scheme offers a 20% discount on stays until the end of the year and other benefits.

Hotel Meliá Madeira Mare is taking part in a “When You Come Back” scheme until the 12th of July. It offers a 30% discount and a further 50% of points for members of the Meliá Rewards program. Both schemes are offering largely flexible and refundable bookings, allowing bookings to be rescheduled or cancelled up to 7 days before arrival.

Both hotel chains have been awarded the Clean & Safe seal and have implemented a safety and hygiene plan that follows all the World Health Organization and Directorate-General of Health (DGS) recommendations.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/97399/Hoteis_Golden_Residence_e_Melia_Madeira_Mare_retomam_hoje_a_sua_atividade

 

Algarve Situation Report

Covid 19 statistics

According to DGS as at 1st July the Algarve has so far 632 infected – 14 more than yesterday and 15 deaths.

The number of confirmed cases by municipality and deaths shown in brackets is as follows:

Regional count update: source (DGS): Albufeira has 121 (2 deaths); Faro – 85; Lagos – 81; Portimão – 81 ( 3 deaths ); Loulé – 78 ( 5 deaths ); Tavira – 36; Silves – 26; Olhão – 19; Vila Real de Stº António – 17 ( 2 deaths ); Lagoa – 13 ( 2 deaths ); Monchique – 9; São Brás de Alportel – 4 ( 1 death ); Vila do Bispo – 4 and  Castro Marim – 4

Representatives of Algarve and Andalusia signal reopening of border

Official authorities from the Algarve and the Spanish region of Andalusia participated yesterday in a symbolic ceremony to mark the reopening of the Portuguese-Spanish border by the Guadiana International Bridge, after three and a half months of closure due to the covid-19 pandemic.

The president of the Algarve Intermunicipal Community, António Miguel Pina, and the president of the Algarve Tourism Region, João Fernandes, highlighted the importance of the moment for the economy on both sides of the border and for the socio-cultural relations between the border towns, in a ceremony in which they were accompanied by the representative of the regional government of Andalusia in the province of Huelva, Bela Verano.

Also accompanied by the presidents of the three municipalities that make up the Eurocity of Guadiana – Conceição Cabrita, from Vila Real de Santo António, Francisco Amaral, from Castro Marim, and Natália Santos, mayor of Ayamonte (Spain) -, António Pina and João Fernandes then delivered bags of Algarvian oranges to Spanish and foreign visitors who crossed the bridge to enter Portugal, as a way of “thanking them for their trust” that they place in the Algarve.

The President of the Algarve Tourism Region, João Fernandes, also highlighted the importance of the moment, stressing that the Spanish market is “responsible for more than one million overnight stays” in the Portuguese region and that the opening of the border benefits the economy of the two regions, very based on tourism.

The representative of the Government of Andalusia in the province of Huelva, Bela Verano, recalled how “the crisis of the covid-19 affected the health of compatriots and cross-border relations”, leaving the populations on both sides of the border “to suffer doubly from the isolation”, after seeing “the shared way of life stop dry”and“personal and commercial relations disappear immediately “with the closing of the crossings between the two countries.

“It is also very important to remember that there are Spanish residents in the Algarve, around 1300, who were eager to see their families,” said João Fernandes.

The president of RTA is hopeful that this reopening of borders could bring another breath to the regional economy.

Covid-19: Authorities remain at the borders with Spain to report on measures in force

SEF and GNR will remain at the land borders with Spain to ensure that people entering the country are “fully informed” of the measures in force in Portugal in the context of combating covid-19, it was announced today.

The land borders between Portugal and Spain were reopened today, after being temporarily closed on March 16 due to the covid-19 pandemic.

In a statement, the Ministry of Internal Affairs said that mobile checks of random and temporary character will be carried out on vehicles for the collective transport of passengers, motorhomes and light vehicles in Valença, Quintanilha, Vilar Formoso, Caia and Castro Marim.

Municipality delivers six more “top of the range” ventilators to Portimão Hospital

The Portimão City Council today delivered to the Hospital do Barlavento six intensive care ventilators model Dräger V600, manufactured in Germany and the first of its kind to operate in Portugal.

In a note sent by the municipality, it reads that, these state-of-the-art devices come to join the lung surgeon recently offered to that hospital unit and also considered “top of the range” with regard to ventilation in intensive care, allowing Hospital de Portimão a capacity “unparalleled treatment in the south of the country”.

In the same publication, the Municipality also highlights the acquisition of 12 infusion syringes and 12 infusion pumps, “essential equipment” in the treatment of critically ill patients.

In the same press release, the municipality recalls that it ordered a total of 24 ventilators of various types, for which the 350,000 euros initially allocated to the Portuguese Grand Prix Formula 1 in Motonáutica was applied, meanwhile cancelled due to Covid-19.

 

Situation Report Azores 1st July – 2nd July 2020 – From our colleague in the Azores

The Regional Government of the Azores has just published a list of ‘approved’ laboratories in continental Portugal where people, travelling to the region, can book a free “Covid-19” test prior to their flight:  https://covid19.azores.gov.pt/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/LaboratoriosConvencionadosCovid30062020.pdf

The tests, being paid for by the Azorean government, must be completed within 72 hours of flight departure and proof of travel is required.  Results are being sent to the regional health authority as well as the visitor.

Meanwhile, the official state of ‘Public Calamity’ on the islands of Faial, Pico, Santa Maria, São Miguel & Terceira has been extended until 00:00 on the 15th of July.  Despite the “efficacy of the approved procedures” in “containing the spread of the virus in the region”, as well as the “adherence, commitment and responsibility” of people to the implemented measures, the regional government believes that in view of the evolution the global pandemic situation plus the opening of air connections from abroad to those islands, it is justifiable to maintain that situation as well as an extension of the ‘Alert’ status on the islands of Corvo, Flores, Graciosa, São Jorge.

As a result of the 852 tests in the last 24 hours, 1 new ‘positive’ case of “Covid-19” has been diagnosed on the island of São Miguel.  It’s the 10-year-old son of the woman who tested ‘positive’ on arrival on the 27th June.  Currently, the boy is in a stable ‘medical’ condition and in ‘quarantine’ with his mother.

To-date, 153 people have been infected with the virus since the first ‘positive’ case was discovered in the Azores on the 15th of March.  132 of them have recovered but sadly, 16 died, leaving 5 ‘active’ cases; 4 on São Miguel and 1 on Terceira.

 

 

 

Portugal Situation Report Wednesday 1st July 2020

Introduction

Welcome to our most comprehensive report for some time with no less than  25 news items courtesy of our volunteer correspondents. The theme today, however, is very much “Borders, Borders, borders!” We start this morning with the situation of what is known and not known regarding the opening of borders and the issue concerning the UK so called “air-bridge” or “traffic light” system. These are complex issues and obviously subject to considerable public interest.

What is “known” is that the ban on the disembarkation of passengers and crews from cruise liners which has been in place since March and was due to expire at 23:59 hours on 30th June has been extended under Order 6756-A/2020 until 15th July, whereupon it may be further extended.

The second “known” is that with effect from 1st July, European Union will reopen their external borders (outside of Europe) to 15 external countries whose epidemiological situation of covid-19 they consider satisfactory, excluding countries such as the United States and Brazil from this list. This is in the form of a “recommendation” and ultimately it will remain up to individual EU countries to make the decision for their borders, meaning in some cases countries could re-impose their own measures.

Regarding the land border with Spain, the border controls expired last night at midnight.  What is “known” is that the President of the Republic will travel to Badajoz (Spain) on July 1, for the “Official Ceremony of the full reopening of the Borders with Spain”. A program of the ceremony has been published. There will also be a smaller ceremony on the bridge between the Algarve and Andalusia, comprising a local and Spanish officials. From speaking with Portuguese officials yesterday, our understanding is that the situation will revert to that prior to the State of Emergency in March i.e. a full opening without restrictions.

What is NOT yet known, despite much speculation in the Portuguese and UK media, are the countries where people returning from overseas to the UK maybe required to undergo quarantine. We have not speculated on this, as the “official” government announcement has yet to be made. We therefore wait and see the position as far as Portugal is concerned. Media to date have published stories suggesting “that they know”, but clearly they do not, as there are different scenarios stated for Portugal. What we can say, however, is that officials here in Portugal have made every effort to promote Portugal’s case to be excluded. We wait and see. Details are c