Portugal Situation Report Wednesday 9th June 2021

 

Good morning – So we woke up on Tuesday to the announcement that Spain had overnight decided to make anyone crossing the border to show a negative PCR test.  Without consultation with the Portuguese Government it seemed. Within hours, we saw a very contrite Minister for Foreign affairs say that this was all a mistake and that it would be redacted within hours. This story obviously effected a lot of people and by 2 O’clock there was confirmation that indeed it was not happening.

What has happened though is that the long alliance of working together by the two respective governments seems to have hit a bad patch. At the same time, Spain has also gone out on a limb from the rest of the EU by allowing any third country citizens who have been vaccinated twice to enter Spain without any form of test certificate. However yesterday, the Head of State declared that after all “there was no diplomatic problem, there was just a technical lapse”. We shall see what happens in the days to come but in the meantime anyone travelling in a foreign car in Spain could be stopped and asked to show either their vaccine certificate or a negative PCR test result.

With the increasing temperatures and higher risk levels, it is important to be aware that fires have been caused through negligence in the use of motorized gardening equipment. Please note that when the fire risk is at MAXIMUM as it is in some municipalities today, the use of “strimmers” (unless they have a nylon line), brush cutters and stubble shredders is PROHIBITED. Avoid the use of metal discs. Special care must be taken when using machinery to clean land especially in high temperatures. More details on our website here

The fire risk will increase further over the next few days, so it is important to be aware of this – especially what to do should a fire approach your home. More information about what to do can be downloaded from our website. Remember especially for those living in high fire risk areas is to have an action plan should a fire approach your home..

Yesterday there were around 75 fires with one in particular at Sertao, Castelo Branco burning for 5 hours before being brought to a resolution stage, despite a fast response and the mobilization of nearly 180 personnel, supported by over 40 vehicles and sight aircraft/helicopters – one of the largest responses this year. This operation was under the command of Francisco Peraboa, responsible for the District Command of Relief Operations (CDOS) of Castelo Branco, whom I had the pleasure of meeting some two years ago. A very experienced Commander indeed.

Some good news announced yesterday is that the European regulation that obliges all digital platforms with a presence in the European Union to remove terrorist content from the Internet in less than an hour after an alert from the authorities, has entered into force. This is important to help contain the spread of extremist ideologies online. The increasing spread of texts, images, sound or videos, in particular live broadcasts that “incite, request or contribute to terrorist offences” or provide instructions or encourage people to participate in a terrorist group, is a global problem that needs to be contained. This will greatly help the security forces in combatting terrorism.

Lastly, please see our headlines that people over 60 years of age who have not yet been vaccinated against Covid-19 can go this Wednesday and Thursday, 9th and 10th June, between 3 pm and 5 pm, to the vaccination centres in Albufeira, Lagoa , Lagos, Loulé, Faro, Portimão, Silves and Olhão to receive your vaccine.

Please have a Safe Day

Headlines

Are you over 60 years old and not yet vaccinated? Go to “Happy Days” in 8 centres in the Algarve

People over 60 years of age who have not yet been vaccinated against Covid-19 can go this Wednesday and Thursday, 9th and 10th June, between 3 pm and 5 pm, to the vaccination centres in Albufeira, Lagoa, Lagos, Loulé, Faro, Portimão, Silves and Olhão to receive your vaccine.

According to the Regional Health Administration (ARS) of the Algarve, there is no need to make prior appointments: just bring ‘your citizen card, be eligible and appear on the Ministry of Health’s vaccination lists (valid for the 1st dose and for those who have not yet) have made the appointment).

This action comes within the scope of the initiative announced last week by the task force for the vaccination plan against Covid-19, whose objective is to create specific days and hours for people from more advanced age groups who, for some reason, were left out of the process, can be vaccinated without marking.

http://www.arsalgarve.min-saude.pt/noticias/tem-mais-de-60-anos-e-ainda-nao-foi-vacinadoa/

Covid-19

Covid-19 Situation report published by DGS 8th June 2021

Confirmed Cases: 853,632 (+ 598 / + 0.07 %)

Number of admitted: 296 (+ 5 / + 1.72 %)

Number of ICU admitted: 66 (+ 7 / + 11.86 %)

Deaths: 17.037 (+ 1 / + 0.01 %)

Recovered: 812,964 (+ 790 / + 0.10 %)

Active cases: 23,631 (-193 /-0.81%)

Safe Communities comparisons/trends show that deaths were In line with last weeks’ average; there was a decrease in new cases compared to yesterday but above last weeks’ daily average (570); recoveries more than new cases and that 58% of new cases were in Lisbon and Vale do Tejo higher percentage than Monday. There was a small increase of those in hospital for the second day highest total since 5th May 2021. Covid-19 Patients reduced by 6552 compared to number in hospital 1st February 2021 and in ICU there was another moderate increase for one day. Highest total since 15th May 2021

NEW CASES ARE INCREASING: It is important not to let our guard down at this crucial time. This means complying with the basic hygiene, social distancing and facemask rules.

Health

Covid-19: Portugal welcomes first foreigners with vaccination certificate next week.

Arouca, Aveiro, 08 Jun 2021 (Lusa) – The Minister of Economy and Digital Transition announced today that Portugal will spend next week receiving foreign citizens in the country who present the proper vaccination certificate, as recommended by the Council of Europe.

The measure was announced this afternoon in Arouca, in the district of Aveiro, during the presentation of the national and international promotion campaign for the destination Portugal.

“This week we will ensure the reopening of non-essential travel from the United States to Portugal, for people who have a vaccination certificate, as recommended by the recently approved European Council,” said Pedro Siza Vieira.

This means that visitors from the North American territory “with two complete vaccinations of a brand recognized by the European Medicines Authority will be able to make non-essential trips [to Portugal] starting next week”.

The measure follows the approval by the Portuguese presidency of the European Union of the regulation of travel certificates relating to Covid-19, which, according to the official, aims above all to “ensure that there are uniform criteria for the movement of people” within European territory.

“What we wanted to ensure is that citizens who fulfilled the same requirements within the European Union could recover this freedom of movement”, declared Pedro Siza Vieira.

The minister believes that air mobility will return to normality “in the coming weeks or months” because the vaccination plans “are being carried out at great speed throughout Europe”, but he says that, in the meantime, the focus of sector entities must be another.

“We have to continue to do our work regardless of the decisions of other states”, defended the official, referring to the decision of the United Kingdom to remove Portugal from its green list.

“We will continue to work to create the best conditions so that those who want to visit us can come safely. There is a demand for travel that, at this moment, is repressed by administrative, health and other decisions. When we normalize the health situation and if we have the capacity to resume air mobility, which everyone estimates could happen during the summer, we are going to recover some tourist activity this year,” he explained.

The Government estimates that, by the end of 2021, Portugal may have “a level of foreign visitors and tourist income slightly higher than last year”.

Vaccinations

Almost 40% of the Portuguese population has already received a vaccine against Covid-19.

According to the weekly vaccination report released by the DGS, 3,986,585 people are already vaccinated with the first dose, which corresponds to 39% of the population, and 2,315,000 have completed vaccination (23%).

The data show that in the last week 226,341 more people were vaccinated with the first dose and 333,769 with the second, totalling 560,110.

Vaccination of the age group of people over 80 years is now 97% (654,368 elderly) with the first dose already administered and 92% (619,596) with the two doses taken.

In the range between 65 and 79 years old, 94% of people in this group (1,515,874) have already received the first dose, a percentage that drops to 51% (811,974) with regard to complete vaccination – a considerable increase compared to 43% from last week.

In the group between 50 and 64 years old, 59% (1,278,890) have already been vaccinated for the first time and another 26% (550,352) have already received the two doses of vaccine against Covid-19.

Since the start of vaccination against Covid-19, on December 27, 2020, Portugal has already received 7,263,540 vaccines, with 6,299,315 doses distributed by vaccination posts in mainland Portugal and the autonomous regions.

By region, data from DGS indicate that the North continues to lead in the number of vaccines administered, with a total of 2,183,751 doses, closely followed by Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, where 2,081,872 doses have already been administered.

The Center is the third region in the country where more people have received the vaccine (1,146,385), followed by Alentejo (342,972), Algarve (246,379), Madeira (163,079) and Azores (132,395).

Weekly Vaccination Report.

With regard to vaccination coverage of the population by region, Alentejo leads the percentage of people who have already received a dose of the vaccine (47%), while the Centre has 44%.

The report also indicates that 40,372 young people (5%) between 18 and 24 years old are already vaccinated with the first dose with the first dose and 25,709 (3%) with the two doses of the vaccine against Covid-19.

According to the DGS, vaccination by decreasing age groups, up to 16 years old, and for people aged 16 or over, applies to those who have diseases with increased risk of severe Covid-19 or death, such as diabetes, severe obesity, active oncological disease, transplantation and immunosuppression, severe neurological diseases and mental illnesses.

There are still 1,293 children and young people, from zero to 17 years old, vaccinated with the first dose, while 413 already have the complete vaccination, need the data from the General Directorate of Health.

Last week, according to data from DGS, Portugal received about one million vaccines against Covid-19.

People aged 43 or over can, from Monday, make an appointment to take the vaccine on the self-scheduling platform of the Directorate-General for Health.

Tests

Covid-19: Portugal has already performed around 12 million tests, more than half this year.

“January was the month in which we tested the most, more than 1.6 million”, said Fernando Almeida at the Occasional Commission for monitoring the application of response measures to the Covid-19 disease pandemic and the economic and economic recovery process, where he was heard today at the request of the PSD.

The coordinator of the ‘task force’ for the promotion of the “Plan for the Operationalization of the Testing Strategy in Portugal” stated that January 22 was the day on which more tests were carried out (77,000), adding that at that time the positivity rate had reached the 20.2%.

He highlighted the “great effort” that the ‘task force’ has made to maintain the testing levels: “In April we reached almost 99,000 tests, but here with a significant difference in which the positivity was only 0.8%”.

On average, 40 to 50 thousand tests were performed per day, an average that has been maintained weekly, said Fernando Almeida.

Between March 16 and June 4, 541,335 tests were carried out in education and teaching establishments, of which 728 were positive, resulting in a positivity rate of around 0.13%.

In Higher Education, 160,393 tests were performed, of which 88 were positive, which means a 0.05% positivity rate.

Portuguese Spanish Border issue.

The President of the Portuguese Republic today described Spain’s request for proof of vaccination against Covid-19 or a negative test at the land borders with Portugal as a “technical error”, and ruled out any “diplomatic problem”.

“That’s right, it was a mistake, a technical mistake. Just last night [Monday], first the Minister of State and Foreign Affairs, then the Prime Minister, warned me that the Spanish authorities had already clarified that this morning they would say that it was a rectification”, he said. Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa.

The Head of State declared that “there was no diplomatic problem, there was only a technical lapse”.

“It was a rectification that was done, thankfully. We started today with good news. It happens, technical lapses happened to us in the management of the pandemic”, he referred, in statements broadcast by RTP and SIC.

Asked if he had any contact with Spain, he replied: “The executive Portuguese authorities spoke with the Spanish authorities and it was immediately clear that it was all a mistake”.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa was also asked if he expected the same to happen with the United Kingdom, which removed Portugal from its so-called “green list” of tourism, and replied: “Everything in its own time, today we are talking about Spain”.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Augusto Santos Silva, announced today that Spain will amend the rule that required the presentation of proof of vaccination against Covid-19 or negative test at land borders with Portugal.

Enforcement

Covid-19 – GNR closed establishments in Albufeira due to illegal parties.

In a statement, the GNR – Guarda Nacional Republicana informs that it closed three establishments due to non-compliance with the measures in force to contain the Covid-19 pandemic, in the municipality of Albufeira.

During a patrol action last Saturday afternoon, the guards verified that a party was taking place in the outer precinct of a catering establishment, with around 200 people meeting inside, “who were not to respect measures of social distancing and the use of masks”. Following the action, the GNR closed the space, and the respective administrative offense was prepared.

The same statement goes forward that, on the same day, at night, two other establishments were closed, one for non-compliance with the rules of occupation, permanence and physical distance, “where there were dozens of people dancing inside”, and the other for being in full operation after hours allowed, both situations having been terminated by the military who drafted the respective administrative offence.

The Public Security Police (PSP) will carry out, from Wednesday to Sunday, “some access control” in the central axis of Lisbon, especially in areas linked to parties popular, with “limitations to road and pedestrian circulation”.

“We will have a strong police presence, in which we will be particularly attentive to the areas that are usually connected with these festivities”, said the superintendent of the Metropolitan Command of Lisbon of PSP Domingos Antunes, within the context of the Covid-19 and the cancellation of popular festivals in Lisbon.

The measures to be implemented during the period of the popular saints in the city of Lisbon were presented today at a joint press conference, by the Regional Health Administration of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo (ARSLVT), the Lisbon City Council, through the Municipal Police, and of the Metropolitan Command of Lisbon of the PSP.

In this context, the intervention of the PSP has as “absolute priority” the central axis of Lisbon, namely the Bairro Alto, Cais do Sodré and Avenida 24 de Julho areas, “where the police will, also in co-ordination with the Municipal Police, carry out some access control, so there will be limitations to road and pedestrian circulation”.

Rail strike

CP carried out just 284 of the 979 rail journeys it had scheduled until 6:00 pm yesterday, due to the impact of the strike by ticket inspectors and workers, according to an official company source.

According to the same source, of the 284 trains that circulated, 242 were carried out within the scope of the defined minimum services.

CP ticket office workers and inspectors yesterday carried out the third and last day of the strike in protest against the proposed career regulation and for salary increases and compliance with the company agreement.

These CP workers started a three-day national strike on Sunday in protest against the proposed career regulation presented by the company, which they say predict “an increase in the versatility of functions” and the “joining and extinction of professional categories”, considering that this “will jeopardize present and future jobs”.

They also demand the “improvement of the base salary, which is currently at the threshold of the national minimum wage”, and the “replacement of wage losses suffered by operational railway workers who were infected by the pandemic caused by Covid-19, as well as by those who had to comply with confinement prophylactic by being in contact with infected colleagues”.

 

Region Reports

Madeira Situation Report Wednesday 9th June 2021

By Daniel Fernandes

Covid-19 update

There were 14 new Covid-19 cases, 57 recoveries and no deaths from Covid-19 in Madeira since the previous Madeira Situation Report.

On Saturday, there were 3 new Covid-19 cases (all cases of local transmission) and 16 recoveries. The number of patients in hospital decreased to 6 and none were in intensive care.

On Sunday, there were 3 new Covid-19 cases (all cases of local transmission) and 12 recoveries. The number of patients in hospital decreased to 4, none of whom were in intensive care.

On Monday, there were 4 new Covid-19 cases (from 1 passenger who had arrived from the Lisbon and Tagus Valley Region and 3 cases of local transmission) and 14 recoveries. The number of patients in hospital decreased to 3 and none were in intensive care.

And on Tuesday, there were 4 new Covid-19 cases (all cases of local transmission) and 15 recoveries. The number of patients in hospital and in intensive care remained the same.

There were 97 active cases on Tuesday, of which 12 had been imported while the other 85 cases had been a result of local transmission. As of Tuesday, there had been 9,507 cases, 9,338 recoveries and 72 deaths.

On Tuesday, there were 10 patients in isolation in a dedicated hotel, 84 patients in isolation in their own accommodation and 3 patients in hospital, none of whom in intensive care.

On the same day, there were 61 suspected cases under epidemiological investigation and analysis, which were all linked to patients who tested positive for Covid-19, to calls made to the SRS24 helpline, to referrals by SESARAM (Madeira Regional Health Service) and to airport screening.

There were 22,164 travellers under monitoring by the health authorities. Monitoring is being carried out through the ‘MadeiraSafe’ app. There were also 393 people, who had contact with positive cases, being monitored by the health authorities of several Madeira municipalities and of Porto Santo.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal and Porto Santo airports, 224,406 samples had been collected until Tuesday (at 15h30). By Tuesday, 458,509 samples from RT-PCR tests had been processed and 66,116 antigen rapid tests had been carried out in the Autonomous Region of Madeira.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 620 calls from Thursday to Tuesday. Overall, it had received 52,066 calls.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (Linha de Acompanhamento Psicológico da Direção Regional de Saúde – 291 212 399 – available every day from 09h00 to 21h00), which was set up to provide emotional and mental support to anyone in Madeira received 11 calls from Friday to Tuesday. Overall, it has received 3,620 calls.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/06/05/drs-anuncia-3-casos-de-Covid-19-ha-16-recuperados-e-53-suspeitos/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/06/06/3-novos-casos-de-Covid-19-12-recuperados-55-suspeitos/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/06/07/4-novos-casos-de-Covid-19-14-recuperados-54-suspeitos/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/06/08/4-novos-casos-de-Covid-19-15-recuperados-61-suspeitos/

Covid-19 Vaccination update.

The 100,000th Covid-19 inoculation in the Region took place on Sunday at around 11h00.

As of May 6th, 40% of the population had been administered the 1st vaccine dose while 24% of the population had been fully vaccinated. A total of 18,489 vaccine doses (7,557 1st doses & 10,932 2nd doses) were administered in the week ending on May 6th.

The plan for this week is to continue to administer vaccines throughout the Region. A highlight will be the continuing vaccination of bed-ridden patients and people with reduced mobility.

The following data was up to date on May 6th:

Number of inoculated people (1st dose) – 101,448 (39.9%) – an increase of 7,557 compared to the previous week

Number of inoculated people (2nd dose) – 61,631 (24.2%) – an increase of 10,932 compared to the previous week

Vaccine doses administered & vaccination rate by age (0-17) – 37-0.1% (1st dose) & 14-0.0% (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered & vaccination rate by age (18-24) – 1,149-5.1% (1st dose) & 592-2.7% (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered & vaccination rate by age (25-49) – 20,919-23% (1st dose) & 9,974-11% (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered & vaccination rate by age (50-59) – 21,687-55.1% (1st dose) & 6,919-17.6% (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered & vaccination rate by age (60-64) – 15,126-96.2% (1st dose) & 7,460- 47.4% (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered & vaccination rate by age (65-69) – 12,963-96.7% (1st dose) & 10,320-77% (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered & vaccination rate by age (70-79) – 18,996-100% (1st dose) & 16,150-86.3% (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered & vaccination rate by age (80-80+) – 10,571-95.6% (1st dose) & 10,202-92.2% (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered (females) – 59,702 (1st dose) & 36,821 (2nd dose)

Vaccination rate (females) – 44% (1st dose) & 27.2% (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered (males) – 41,746 (1st dose) & 24,810 (2nd dose)

Vaccination rate (males) – 35.2% (1st dose) & 20.9% (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered by Municipality (Porto Santo) – 2,888 (1st dose) & 1,453 (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered by Municipality (Funchal) – 45,759 (1st dose) & 26,929 (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered by Municipality (Câmara de Lobos) – 5,592 (1st dose) & 6,009 (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered by Municipality (Ribeira Brava) – 5,159 (1st dose) & 3,481 (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered by Municipality (Ponta do Sol) – 3,679 (1st dose) & 2,369 (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered by Municipality (Calheta) – 4,993 (1st dose) & 3,172 (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered by Municipality (Porto Moniz) – 1,329 (1st dose) & 830 (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered by Municipality (São Vicente) – 2,204 (1st dose) & 1,402 (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered by Municipality (Santana) – 3,325 (1st dose) & 2,258 (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered by Municipality (Machico) – 7,906 (1st dose) & 5,118 (2nd dose)

Vaccine doses administered by Municipality (Santa Cruz) – 14,564 (1st dose) & 8,580 (2nd dose)

As of May 8th, 167,800 Covid-19 vaccine doses (102,151 1st doses & 65,649 2nd doses/full vaccinations) have been administered in the Autonomous Region of Madeira.

And shipment of 5,000 AstraZeneca vaccine doses arrived in the Autonomous Region of Madeira on Tuesday afternoon.

A reminder that the SESARAM (Madeira Health Service) Covid-19 vaccination helpline (SRS VACINA COVID-19) in the Autonomous Region of Madeira is 800 210 263 and its email address is vacinacao@sesaram.pt

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/130936/Madeira_ja_administrou_100_mil_primeiras_doses_da_vacina_contra_a_Covid-19_

https://covidmadeira.pt/publicacao/boletim-vacinacao-Covid-19-ram-de-07-06-2021/

https://web.sesaram.pt/COVID19_INFO

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/06/08/chegaram-mais-5-mil-vacinas-da-astrazeneca/

President of the Madeira Regional Government invited Boris Johnson to honeymoon in Madeira.

Miguel Albuquerque (President of the Madeira Regional Government) wrote a letter to Boris Johnson (Prime Minister of the United Kingdom) inviting him to spend his honeymoon in Madeira. Miguel Albuquerque reminded that Margaret Thatcher (UK Prime Minister from 1979 to 1990) spent her honeymoon in Madeira in 1951. The letter gives Boris Johnson assurance that Madeira is a safe destination and has even been thought to be the safest destination in Europe.

Miguel Albuquerque expressed his confidence that the policies adopted in Madeira have been shown to be successful in controlling the pandemic. He also explained that careful health policies such as Covid-19 testing on arrival and a booklet of good practices for the tourism sector were implemented in order to safely host tourists while safeguarding both residents and tourists. The letter reminds that there is passenger screening on arrival at airports in Funchal and Porto Santo, whether by presenting a negative PCR test or by testing passengers who don’t have it. Furthermore, the letter also mentioned the MadeiraSafe app that had been introduced in July 2020, which enables monitoring of the health status of travellers. President Albuquerque also mentioned the Madeira Safe to Discover Certificate, which proves compliance with all the relevant policies.

Boris Johnson is also told that on January 4th 2021, the Madeira Regional Government introduced a “Green Corridor” (Corredor Verde) for passengers who have been vaccinated or who had previously been infected with Covid-19.

The letter also mentions the huge amount of work that has been undertaken on testing for Covid-19 in the Region, and the large Covid-19 vaccination campaign that has already ensured more than 40% of the population has been inoculated with at least one vaccine dose.

Towards the letter, Miguel Albuquerque, stressed that the Region has committed to creating conditions to ensure the safety of all residents and travellers so as to protect everybody’s health and to rebuild Madeira’s small economy.

To end the letter, Boris Johnson was reminded of the historic ties that exist between the UK and the Madeira archipelago.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/131058/Albuquerque_convida_Boris_Jonhson__para_passar_a_lua-de-mel_na_Madeira

Portugal National Day celebrations.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, the Portuguese President, arrived in Funchal on Monday evening. Miguel Albuquerque (President of the Madeira Regional Government) and Ireneu Barreto (Portuguese Republic’s Representative to Madeira) were among those who welcomed the Portuguese President at the airport. The main aim of this visit is to take part in the official celebration of Portugal Day (Dia de Portugal, de Camões e das Comunidades Portuguesas – Day of Portugal, Camões and the Portuguese Communities) on June 10th. This year’s ceremony will take place in Funchal and will once again include a military parade and a flypast by Portuguese Air Force F-16s. Another official ceremony will take place in Belgium. Each year, there are official Portugal Day celebrations in a Portuguese city and in a country that hosts a large Portuguese diaspora. The Portuguese President takes part in the ceremony in Portugal and then travels abroad to the take part in the official ceremonies. The Portuguese Prime-Minister has often joined the President in the ceremonies abroad. This dual format has been in place since 2016.

Preparations for the ceremony have been underway for several days. Work is taking place in downtown Funchal, military vehicles have been arriving on the island, NRP Álvares Cabral (a Vasco da Gama-class frigate) docked in Funchal on Tuesday and several F-16s landed in Funchal on Monday.

The military ceremony on Portugal Day will take place on June 10th at 11h00 and will have the following order:

– Military honours: National Anthem and review of the troops on parade

– Ceremony in honour of all Military dead

– Speech by Carmo Caldeira (President of the Organising Committee)

– Speech by Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa (Portugal’s President)

– Awards presentation

– Military Parade

– Salute to veterans who took part in military operations

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/06/08/presidente-da-republica-chega-a-madeira-com-mensagem-de-esperanca-para-o-turismo/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/06/08/fragata-alvares-cabral-chegou-para-o-10-de-junho/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/06/07/preparativos-a-todo-o-gas-para-as-cerimonias-do-dia-10-de-junho/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/06/08/conheca-a-agenda-de-marcelo-rebelo-de-sousa-para-os-dias-9-e-10-de-junho/

New fire-fighting helicopter arrived in Madeira.

A new multi-mission helicopter arrived at the Port of Caniçal. It will be used to fight forest fires in the Region between June 15th and November 14th. A total of €695,000 was invested in this helicopter as part of the regional firefighting plan. Another helicopter arrived last week to enable training for firefighting teams that are deployed by air.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/131057/Helicoptero_para_combater_incendios_chegou_hoje_a_Madeira

Cruise ship crew member taken to Funchal for medical treatment.

A crew member from the Carnival Dream cruise ship was taken for medical treatment. The cruise ship was sailing from Miami to Marseille and did not dock in Madeira. It merely sailed near the south shore of Madeira, where a rescue vessel collected the crew member. He was then taken to Hospital da Luz. The Funchal Fire Service carried out this operation.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/131039/Sapadores_do_Funchal_transportaram_tripulante_de_navio_para_o_Hospital_da_Luz

https://www.dnoticias.pt/2021/6/7/264241-porto-do-funchal-recebe-hoje-a-estreia-do-navio-carnival-dream/

International school helps to attract foreigners to Madeira.

Filipe Ladeira Santos, the President of International Sharing School, said the school has helped attract foreign investment and residents to Madeira. He explained that although there are some Madeiran students at the school, most students are foreign citizens. Some of the foreign languages taught at the school include French, German, Mandarin and Russian. The school is capable of hosting up to 200 students aged 3 to 16.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/131048/Escola_internacional_e_mais_valia_para_captar_estrangeiros

 

Algarve Situation Report Wednesday 9th June 2021

Awareness raising action for the situation of refugees arrives at Mar Shopping.

The action is promoted by the IKEA Foundation which, in collaboration with several partners, has the mission to support and help people in vulnerable communities to have better living conditions.

In a statement, the MAR Shopping Algarve and MAR Shopping Matosinhos shopping centers make it known that they will receive, until June 20, an installation by Better Shelter, an entity dedicated to building shelters for refugees and displaced persons forced.

This action includes installations of real shelters (Better Shelters), which will enable visitors to understand how this solution can help and improve the lives of people who, due to war, natural disasters, political instability or economic insecurity, are forced to leave their homes and to become refugees.

Additionally, it will be possible to follow, through the social networks of the MAR Shopping malls, real stories of people who, thanks to the work of the IKEA Foundation and its partners, now have a more positive outlook for the future.

The same statement goes forward that MAR Shopping Algarve and MAR Shopping Matosinhos are part of eight Ingka Centres shopping centres that will exhibit Better Shelter shelters, in order to raise awareness of the situation of 80 million people currently living displaced throughout the world. These shelters are temporary and versatile solutions that allow us to offer the basic conditions of housing, security and privacy for those in a refugee situation.

Arrested suspected of kidnapping man in Alcoutim for alleged debt.

A man suspected of kidnapping another in Alcoutim as a result of an alleged debt was arrested and presented to the Faro Court, subject to presentations to the authorities.

The 34-year-old defendant was present on Monday at the first judicial interrogation at the Faro Criminal Instruction court, which also determined the prohibition of contact with the 31-year-old victim, according to a statement from the Faro District Attorney.

The suspect’s arrest followed a warrant issued by the Department of Investigation and Criminal Action (DIAP) of Faro, after an investigation by the Judiciary Police, which carried out the arrest.

The abduction, which took place at the end of April, will be the result of the sale of a high-end vehicle to the victim and the fact that his payment “is in default”, he adds.

According to the Public Prosecutor’s Office, “the suspect and three individuals went to the victim’s workplace” in Alcoutim, and on the spot they approached the victim, “punching and kicking” him.

The men “introduced the victim into a car” and transported her to Loulé.

The victim managed to flee when the suspect and the other three men tried to get hold of a vehicle.

Albufeira creates “Cabinet SOS Empresas” in partnership with ACRAL.

The municipality of Albufeira signed a co-operation protocol with ACRAL – Association of Commerce and Services of the Algarve, for the creation of the “Cabinet SOS Empresas”.

It is a structure that aims to support, guide, inform, monitor and promote the economic fabric of the municipality of Albufeira, improving the response to the serious problems that local entrepreneurs are experiencing, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

A situation that, in the opinion of the mayor of Albufeira, “has uncovered the weaknesses of the economic sector that was most prospering”.

Following the experience acquired with the “Cheque-Prenda” program, an initiative carried out with ACRAL, José Carlos Rolo underlined that “that association promoted a consultation with its members to understand the difficulties they have felt in evaluating the measures that have been taken being decreed by the government over time, as well as to inquire about the need to implement new measures to support the regional economy”.

The mayor justifies that to overcome the urgent need to support companies in the municipality that suffer from a too gradual recovery and without financial return for long periods, the need arose to create the “Cabinet SOS Empresas”, an initiative based on a multi-disciplinary team that “aimed at providing answers in sensitive areas such as legal, accounting or financial, banking, support and applications, among others fundamental to the survival of companies”.

The Office is dedicated to providing quick information, with guidance on the incentives and support available to companies in financial difficulties, presenting solutions in various aspects, streamlining procedures and developing partnerships that can enhance economic activity, encouraging the recovery of suffocated companies by the economic crisis caused by Covid-19.

Vodafone expands optical fibre in Vila Real de Santo António and in the municipality of Lagos.

Vodafone Portugal announced in a statement that it has extended the coverage of its fibre service in the centre of Vila Real de Santo António, and to the parishes of Luz, Santa Maria, São Sebastião and Odiáxere in the municipality of Lagos.

According to the company, this expansion is part of the commitment assumed to take its fibre optic network to 5.3 million families and companies in the country, “allowing consumers greater freedom of choice and ensuring access for all to the benefits of digital economy”.

The expansion of Vodafone Portugal’s optical fibre in Vila Real de Santo António and Lagos also enables companies to access integrated telecommunications and information technology services, such as fixed internet solutions, cybersecurity, cloud applications, Internet of Things, among other innovative services, was said in the same statement.

 

Azores Situation Report Wednesday 9th June 2021

From our colleague in the Azores

Daily Totals

Saturday 5th June 

23 new positive cases of Covid-19 were diagnosed in the Azores, all in São Miguel, in a context of community transmission, resulting from 1,977 tests carried out in reference laboratories in the Region and one in an unconventional laboratory.

The municipality of Ribeira Grande registered 13 cases (four in Rabo de Peixe, one in Matriz, three in Maia, three in Fenais da Ajuda, one in Ribeira Seca and one in São Brás). In the municipality of Ponta Delgada there were six new cases (three in Fajã de Baixo, one in São José, one in São Roque and one in Fajã de Cima). In the municipality of Lagoa, two new cases were diagnosed (one in Santa Cruz and one in Água de Pau). In the municipality of Vila Franca do Campo there were two new cases, both in São Pedro.

There was a total of 24 recoveries.

Sunday 6th June 

22 new positive cases of Covid-19 were diagnosed in the Azores, all in São Miguel, resulting from 2,975 tests carried out in reference laboratories in the Region. One of the diagnosed cases refers to a traveller with a positive test on the 6th day, and the rest are in the context of community transmission.

The municipality of Ribeira Grande registered 13 cases (three in Rabo de Peixe, two in Matriz, one in Pico da Pedra, one in Conceição, one in Porto Formoso and five in Maia). In the municipality of Ponta Delgada there were seven new cases (one case for each of the parishes of São José, São Pedro, Capelas, São Roque, Fajã de Cima, Fajã de Baixo and Pilar da Brittany). In the municipality of Lagoa, a new case was diagnosed in Água de Pau.

There was a total of 31 recoveries.

Monday 7th June 

26 new positive cases of Covid-19 were diagnosed in the Azores, all on the island of São Miguel, following 959 tests carried out in the reference laboratories of the Region. Two of these cases refer to travellers who tested positive upon arrival, a resident and a non-resident. All the other cases are related to the context of community transmission.

The municipality of Ribeira Grande registered 15 cases (six in Rabo de Peixe, five in Maia, two in Porto Formoso, one in Ribeirinha and one in Ribeira Seca). In the municipality of Ponta Delgada, there were nine new cases (four in São Pedro, and one in each of the parishes of Fajã de Baixo, Livramento, São Sebastião, Arrifes and Fenais da Luz). In the municipality of Lagoa, a new case was diagnosed in the parish of Rosário, and in the municipality of Vila Franca do Campo a new case was reported in the parish of São Miguel.

No recoveries registered today.

Tuesday 8th June 

19 new positive cases of Covid-19 were diagnosed in the Azores, one on the island of Faial and 18 on the island of São Miguel, following 2,760 tests carried out in the reference laboratories of the Region, and one in an independent laboratory. Three of the cases are related to travellers who tested positive on the 6th day and the remaining cases were registered in the context of community transmission.

On the island of Faial, the positive case was diagnosed in the parish of Feteira, municipality of Horta, concerning a traveller, resident, who tested positive on the 6th day.

On the island of São Miguel, there are 16 new cases in the context of community transmission and two involving travellers, non-residents, who tested positive upon arrival. The municipality of Ribeira Grande registered 10 cases (four in Rabo de Peixe, four in Conceição and two in Porto Formoso). There are eight new cases in the municipality of Ponta Delgada (three in São Pedro, two in São Roque, two in Fenais da Luz and one in São Sebastião).

Also there was a total of 53 recoveries have been registered and as of today 10 patients are in hospital, all at the Divino Espírito Santo Hospital in Ponta Delgada, with three of them in intensive care.

The archipelago currently has 260 active positive cases: 259 on the island of São Miguel and one on the island of Faial. There are no active local transmission chains and 203 have been extinguished so far. There were 1,375 people under active surveillance yesterday.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, 5,742 positive cases of Covid-19 have been diagnosed in the Azores and 5,319 people recovered from the disease. There were 33 deaths, 79 people who left the archipelago and 51 cases with history of previous cure. Up to now, 523,236 tests have been carried out in the archipelago for SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes Covid-19 disease.

Since December 31st, 2020 and until June 4th, 146,999 doses of Covid-19 vaccine have been administered in the Azores, corresponding to 92,036 people aged 16 years or more who received the first dose, and 54,963 people who received both doses, under the Regional Vaccination Plan.

 

Portugal Situation Report Wednesday 2nd June 2021

 

Introduction

Good morning – As you have hopefully noticed, we have been placing some emphasis over the last few days on public safety, especially as regards to the prevention of rural fires. This becomes increasingly important as we head into the summer months, when the risk of such fires increases. To increase awareness on this topic and particularly “risk awareness”, the Algarve Resident in its edition tomorrow will contain a one page feature, which I have written on rural fire prevention. Please take time to read this and by doing so help keep yourself and others safe.

When is a bubble not a bubble? That is the question seemingly contained in the President of the Republic’s statement on Monday where he commented on the lack of adequate arrangements concerning the Champions League final in Porto on Saturday. Clearly the arrangements where not as originally announced and as a result there were large numbers of people gathering in public areas with no social distancing and no wearing of facemasks. It seems that there is little understanding of the behaviour of football supporters when it comes to crowd management, particularly during periods of celebrations.

Talking about crowds we remind visitors to play by the rules here in Portugal, when it comes to social distancing and wearing of masks in outdoor crowded places, as well as complying with the ban on the drinking of alcohol in public areas. Visitors to Portugal are of course welcome, but please realise that everything is not yet back to normal as far as social activities are concerned.

We have seen the images of the events following the match in Porto, as well as reports in some areas that a minority of visitors are not following the laws here, and therefore respecting all that people here have worked so hard to achieve over the last year.

For those planning to travel to Portugal please realise that the laws here maybe different compared with your own country. Respect our laws please.

The emphasis in tackling Covid-19, like rural fires, should be on awareness and prevention and enforcement only as the last resort. The police here are fully stretched dealing with their normal day to day duties and can ill afford to spend time have to deal with those who cannot be bothered to follow the rules in place. We at Safe Communities are, I believe from the considerable feedback we receive from you, doing our part in helping to keep people informed. For example our two posts on WELCOME to Portugal poster reached almost 70,000 people and several hundred shares and our two posts on beach rules over 61,000. Please therefore share these posts widely so as many people as possible are informed.

Yesterday the Head of the Vaccination Task Force stated that there are more than 60,000 people over the age of 50 waiting for confirmation of self-scheduling for vaccination against Covid-19. The number of registrations was so high that the services will need three days to book all orders.

We suggest therefore in light of this, that after these 3 days those who have still not received a confirmation should call the SNS number 808 24 24 24, even if you have done so previously.

Remember dial 9 for English, Listen for option 5 (or enter 5 immediately) If you speak Portuguese do not use option 9 await option 5 – You are given some information including “if you have not received an SMS dial 3”, then “for vaccination issues” dial 1.

Safe Communities Portugal is pleased to answer your questions where we can. We have noticed sometimes, however, that the same questions are asked several times, when the topic has already been fully explained or a link provided to where such information can be found. This places a great deal extra work on our volunteers, at a time when we have so many other priorities to deal with. We encourage people therefore to please read information and advice provided in the first instance. A reminder that we have a new, very comprehensive website and the answers to many questions can be found here. A question often takes time for us to research, and often the same research can be undertaken by the person asking the question.

The use of photographs on Facebook if used properly can help convey the sense and purpose of the information being posted. We take as much care as possible in this respect. Conversely the posting of pictures/videos which are unsourced clearly designed to stir emotions and provoke a negative response are seldom helpful as they can be misleading. Some tabloids are very experienced at this! In the interests of the integrity of our Facebook page and ensuring accuracy, any photos uploaded under comments should state when and where the photo was taken. We reserve the right to remove any that do not.

Please have a Safe day.

 

Headlines

WHO approves emergency use of Chinese vaccine Coronavac.

The World Health Organization approved, on Tuesday, the use of the Chinese vaccine CoronaVac, from the Sinovac laboratory, in the prevention of Covid-19.

The WHO committee of vaccine experts recommended this vaccine, which requires two doses every two to four weeks, for people 18 years of age or older. The CoronaVac vaccine is already applied in 22 countries and territories, according to data collected by AFP. In addition to China, it is used in Brazil, Tunisia, Chile, Indonesia, Mexico, Thailand and Turkey, among others.

This is the second Chinese immunizer approved by the WHO, and from now on it can also be used by the international Covax device for the distribution of vaccines, mainly in disadvantaged countries.

“The world is in desperate need of several anti-vaccine-19 vaccines to address the huge inequalities across the planet,” said Mariangela Simao, WHO’s Deputy Director-General in charge of access to medicines and health products.

CoronaVac’s effectiveness in preventing symptomatic Covid-19 cases is 57%, but it is 100% effective in preventing serious cases and hospitalizations in the populations studied, according to the WHO. Efficacy in people over 60 has not been studied.

 

Covid-19 Data.

On Tuesday Portugal did not record any deaths from Covid-19 in the last 24 hours, but 445 new cases of the disease were registered, according to the daily report of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS).

Confirmed Cases: 849.538 (+ 445 / + 0.05 %)

Number of admitted: 268 (-15 /-5.30 %)

Number of ICU admitted: 50 (-2 /-3.85 %)

Deaths: 17,025 (+ 0 / + 0.00 %)

Recovered: 809.813 (+ 678 / + 0.08 %)

Active cases: 22,700 (- 233 /- 0.97%)

Safe Communities comparisons/trends show that there are three days with zero deaths out of the last 4; new daily cases were slightly above Monday’s figures but below last week’s daily average (491); recoveries were greater than new cases reversing the trend and of the new cases around 55% were in Lisbon and Tejo Valley, similar to yesterday.

In hospitalisations there was a decrease, reversing the previous days increase.  Covid-19 patients reduced by 6580 compared to number in hospital 1st February 2021. In ICU also a decrease, the total being one of the lowest however since September 2020 There was a welcome decrease in active cases, reversing the increasing figures over the last two days. Still over 500 additional active cases since a week ago, however.

 

Health

Private Hospitals cannot charge for personal protection equipment.

The Health Regulatory Authority (ERS) warned, this Tuesday, private hospitals cannot charge for personal protective equipment to users of the National Health Service (SNS) to whom they provide care.

In a statement, the ERS stresses that the private, cooperative and social sectors with conventions with the NHS can only charge moderating fees for the provision of health services to users of the public system.

The charging of amounts for personal protective equipment used because of the Covid-19 pandemic or “any other amount for services provided to users of the NHS” is “a violation of the rules on access to health care, foreseen and punished” by the law, stresses the ERS.

The health regulatory body reinforces that forcing users of the NHS to pay for equipment is “a violation of their right of access to the provision of care” and “a breach of contract” of the convention agreements.

ERS claims to have “knowledge of various user complaints” from the public system who have been charged for equipment and stresses that private individuals can only charge, “and when applicable, the amount due as a moderating fee” for the activities covered by the convention.

 

Vaccinations

Covid-19: About 63 thousand young people between 16 and 24 years old have already been vaccinated in Portugal.

Lisbon, 01 Jun 2021 (Lusa) – About 63,000 young people aged between 16 and 24 have already been vaccinated against Covid-19 in Portugal, where 19% of the population is already immunized with the two doses, reveal data from DGS released today.

According to data from the DGS weekly vaccination report, 1,099 young people between 16 and 17 years of age were vaccinated with the first dose and 323 had the complete vaccination.

“The class of people under the age of 18 includes young people between 16 and 17 years old who have an indication of vaccination according to DGS Standard 2/2021 and who have been given the Comirnaty vaccine (Pfizer-BioNTech)”, says the DGS.

The data also indicates that 38,276 young people between 18 and 24 years of age are already vaccinated with the first dose and 23,158 (3%) with the two doses of the Covid-19 vaccine.

According to DGS, vaccination by decreasing age groups, up to 16 years old, and of people aged 16 or over, applies to those who have diseases with an increased risk of severe Covid-19 or death, such as diabetes, severe obesity, active cancer disease, transplantation and immunosuppression, severe neurological diseases and mental illness.

According to the weekly vaccination report released by the DGS, 3,757,395 people are already vaccinated with the first dose, which corresponds to 37% of the population, and 1,979,425 have the complete vaccination (19%).

 

Tele-consultations skyrocketed with the pandemic and April saw over 138,000.

Lisbon, 01 Jun 2021 (Lusa) – The Minister of Health, Marta Temido, today highlighted the increase in tele-consultations in the National Health Service since the beginning of the pandemic, which went from 15,000 in April last year to more than 138,000 in the same month this year.

“This shows how much this tragic opportunity of the pandemic has done for the development of tele-health”, said Marta Temido, at the opening ceremony of the eHealth Summit, an event on innovation and digital transformation in health organized by the Ministry of Health under the Portuguese Presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU).

Marta Temido also stressed that, with the demands imposed by the pandemic, the National Health Service managed to modernize itself, “guaranteeing a panoply of responses that go beyond therapeutic counselling”.

She highlighted the need to take full advantage of the advances achieved in digital health, pointing to tele-monitoring and the work developed with the “Trace Covid” platform, which has allowed the registration and management and clinical surveillance of citizens suspected of Covid-19 by public health teams and family doctors.

“The pandemic was not only predictable, but it was predicted,” said Marta Temido, for whom “shock waves” cannot be converted into “demagogy and populism”.

“So that we can leave with lessons learned and with social and economic development models that are more robust, resilient and cohesive and so that we can not only be better prepared technologically and scientifically for new emergencies, but socially more cohesive to face them,” she said.

 

Recovered people can now schedule a vaccine.

Those who recovered from Covid-19 more than six months ago and are over 50 years old can now schedule a date to be vaccinated. The limitation that existed on the Covid-19 Portal has now been lifted, said Gouveia e Melo, who admitted that it may not be necessary to vaccinate children.

Vice Admiral Gouveia e Melo, responsible for the vaccination task force, assured that health centres are calling people who fell ill with Covid-19 (with a positive test for more than six months) and, in the meantime, recovered. Anyone who wants to, and is over 50, can now go to Covid-19 Portal to sign up.

 

Covid-19: Minister says consultations and surgeries are already close to 2019 levels.

Coimbra, 31 May 2021 (Lusa) – The Minister of Health stressed today that there was an increase of 450,000 consultations and 40,000 surgeries, at the hospital level, in the first four months of the year, numbers already close to the levels of 2019, pre-pandemic.

“At this time of less pressure on health care, recovery is already noticeable. In the first four months of this year, at the hospital level, there was an increase of 450,000 consultations and 40,000 surgeries, compared to the same period”, said Marta Temido, who was speaking during the opening session of the National Congress of the Order of Doctors, which takes place in Coimbra.

The minister stressed that this increase means that the levels are already “very close” to those of 2019, before the Covid-19 pandemic.

Also in primary health care, there is an increase compared to 2020, with 12.1 million non-urgent medical consultations, he said.

“We need and count on everyone to continue this path”, stressed Marta Temido.

The Minister of Health also stressed the need to recover the assistance activity, recalling that financial incentive mechanisms were approved for carrying out the postponed assistance activity.

These incentives, at the hospital level, “have already made it possible to recover more than 82,000 first consultations and 30 thousand surgeries”, he pointed out.

According to the official, this inventive regime was extended to primary health care, which may start its activity under this regime in June.

 

Travel

Refunds for cancelled flights are taking an average of 20 days.

The President of the National Civil Aviation Authority (ANAC) rejected this Tuesday that there are “significant delays” in refunds to passengers with flights cancelled due to the pandemic, adding that “they are taking, on average, around 20 days”.

“What we are aware of is that requests for refunds of passengers in cash are taking, on average, around 20 days and that there will be no significant delays in this matter,” said Luís Miguel Ribeiro during a hearing at the Economy Committee, Innovation, Public Works and Housing, in parliament.

According to the President of ANAC, “people started to know and exercise their rights in due time and, therefore, this issue, more or less, was emptied”.

“This matter, as far as we are aware, is being adequately dealt with by the airlines and we have no echoes of large accumulations of debt in this regard,” he reiterated.

Asked by the deputies about the approximately 500 million euros in ticket refunds that TAP will have accumulated between March 2020 and March this year, according to data advanced by Saturday, Luís Miguel Ribeiro said he did not know this amount, but he warned that it was ” probably from a ‘cake’ that includes passengers’ credits that have been turned into vouchers “and that” may or may not be reimbursed or converted into an effective journey “.

“There is a block of passenger rights that keep their claims on the company, but they have the right to travel next, if they want, or to demand reimbursement. This is a set with an expressive value and what we are waiting for. Is that now, with the relaxation of restrictions, many of these so-called ‘vouchers’ are used and that credit is transformed into a trip “, he said.

As he pointed out, in these cases there may be no question of an effective cash refund that will have to be made to passengers.

“If people took advantage of the opportunities presented by the various carriers to, under favourable conditions, transform their credit into the right to travel at a lower price in the future, this, in fact, appears in the companies’ accounts as a right to a refund, but that will be transformed into a service provision “, he said.

“So” – he added – “some caution is needed when interpreting these values, which may not turn into a ‘cash outflow’ for carriers”.

 

Other news

President of the Republic believes that no European country will follow the path of ‘Brexit’.

The President of the Republic said today that no European country will want to leave the European Union after ‘Brexit’, saying that “unity means strength” and that, despite differences, European partners usually agree at the “last minute”.

“I think that any country that observes (…) what happened in the United Kingdom, will say ‘it is better not to experiment, no, we will stay inside’. The EU is very diverse, we are different, but we play together, we discuss, we debate and, at the last minute, we agree. Because we know that unity means strength, and that makes a difference,” said Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa.

The President of the Republic was speaking at a local high school in the city of Kranj, about 30 kilometres from the Slovenian capital, where he gave a class with his Slovenian counterpart, Borut Pahor, on the topic “How do children and young people see and how do they want it? Europe’s future, in terms of values ​​and practical priorities”.

Questioned by a student, if he foresees any further departure from a member state of the European Union, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa who “does not believe”, even “analytically”, that another “problematic scenario” may arise, stating that “there is nothing to see What happened”.

Thus explaining to Slovenian students the “special relationship” that links Portugal to the United Kingdom, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa said that many of his British friends consider that the withdrawal from the European Union, as “often happens in referendums”, arose due to a “Negative coalition”.

The President of the Republic also recalled that, in the days following the referendum, he was invited by the former British Prime Minister, Theresa May, to Downing Street, the seat of the British Government in London, where he realized that the British partners did not know “what to do next”.

“And there was [Theresa May], trying to explain that they were not prepared for that, that they had to think about that later, because they had to convert a negative coalition into a positive position, which is very difficult”, pointed out Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa .

Thus referring that “nobody expected” that “Brexit” would be “possible”, the President of the Republic told the students that Europeans are used to considering “normal” to live in “democracy, to have freedom of the press, and political parties”.

 

Regions

Madeira Situation Report 2nd June 2021

By Daniel Fernandes

Covid-19 update

There were 37 new Covid-19 cases, 73 recoveries and no deaths from Covid-19 in Madeira since the previous Madeira Situation Report.

On Saturday, there were 12 new Covid-19 cases (from 1 passenger who had arrived from France and 11 cases of local transmission) and 25 recoveries. The number of patients in hospital remained 8, 2 of whom were intensive care.

On Sunday, there were 15 new Covid-19 cases (from 1 passenger who had arrived from the Czech Republic and 14 cases of local transmission) and 16 recoveries. The number of patients in hospital increased to 9, 2 of whom were in intensive care.

On Monday, there was 1 new Covid-19 case of local transmission and 16 recoveries. The number of patients in hospital decreased to 7, 2 of whom were in intensive care.

And on Tuesday, there were 9 new Covid-19 cases (from 1 passenger who had arrived from South Africa, 3 passengers who had arrived from Northern Portugal and 5 cases of local transmission) and 16 recoveries. The number of patients in hospital remained 7, 1 of whom was in intensive care.

There were 171 active cases on Tuesday, of which 11 had been imported while the other 160 cases had been a result of local transmission. As of Tuesday, there had been 9,470 cases, 9,227 recoveries and 72 deaths.

On Tuesday, there were 13 patients in isolation in a dedicated hotel, 151 patients in isolation in their own accommodation and 7 patients in hospital, 1 of whom in intensive care.

On the same day, there were 50 suspected cases under epidemiological investigation and analysis, which were all linked to patients who tested positive for Covid-19, to calls made to the SRS24 helpline, to referrals by SESARAM (Madeira Regional Health Service) and to airport screening.

There were 19,389 travellers under monitoring by the health authorities. Monitoring is being carried out through the ‘MadeiraSafe’ app. There were also 569 people, who had contact with positive cases, being monitored by the health authorities of several Madeira municipalities and of Porto Santo.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal and Porto Santo airports, 216,446 samples had been collected until Tuesday (at 15h30). By Tuesday, 445,131 samples from RT-PCR tests had been processed and 58,461 antigen rapid tests had been carried out in the Autonomous Region of Madeira.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 503 calls from Friday to Tuesday. Overall, it has received 51,194 calls.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (Linha de Acompanhamento Psicológico da Direção Regional de Saúde – 291 212 399 – available every day from 09h00 to 21h00), which was set up to provide emotional and mental support to anyone in Madeira received 15 calls from Friday to Tuesday. Overall, it has received 3,592 calls.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/05/29/12-novos-casos-de-Covid-19-25-recuperados-96-suspeitos/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/05/30/15-novos-casos-de-Covid-19-16-recuperados-43-suspeitos/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/05/31/hoje-surgiu-apenas-um-novo-caso-de-Covid-19/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/06/01/9-novos-casos-de-Covid-19-16-recuperados-50-suspeitos/

 

Covid-19 vaccination update.

As of May 30th, 144,578 Covid-19 vaccine doses (93,879 1st doses & 50,699 2nd doses) had been administered in the Autonomous Region of Madeira since the start of the vaccination campaign on December 31st. This means 37% of the Region’s population has been administered the 1st vaccine dose while 20% have been fully vaccinated.

A total of 12,406 vaccine doses (3,436 1st doses & 8,970 2nd doses) were administered in the previous week. The plan for this week is to continue inoculations of both 1st and 2nd doses throughout the Region.

Pedro Ramos, Madeira’s Health and Civil Protection Secretary, said the Region is expected to have administered 150,000 vaccine doses in the next few days, of which 100,000 will be 1st doses.

He announced that pregnant women who are at a certain stage of their pregnancies are already being inoculated as long as they have medical approval.

He also revealed that among the 50,000 fully vaccinated people in the Region, 315 were infected with Covid-19. Nevertheless, he assured that they remained asymptomatic and had not required hospitalisation. He said these figures highlighted the efficiency of vaccination and were a reminder that vaccination does not provide full immunity against Covid-19.

The Madeira Regional Government would like vaccination of youngsters aged 12-15 to be complete before the start of the next school year. They will be administered the Pfizer vaccine as soon as the Directorate-General of Health (Direção-Geral da Saúde) gives approval to vaccination of this age group.

A shipment of 35,100 Pfizer Covid-19 vaccines arrived in Funchal on Monday morning. And 5,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine had been due to arrive in the Region on Tuesday. Administration of the single-dose vaccines will start today on about 1,500 hospital patients who had been selected by SESARAM (Madeira Health Service).

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/130504/Administradas_mais_de_144_mil_vacinas_contra_a_COVID-19_na_RAM

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/05/31/madeira-com-mais-35-100-vacinas/

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/130483/Vacinas_da_Johnson_and_Johnson_chegam_hoje_a_Regiao_

https://observador.pt/2021/05/30/Covid-19-governo-da-madeira-pretende-vacinar-jovens-antes-de-inicio-ano-letivo/

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/130271/Madeira_ja_tem_50000_pessoas_com_vacinacao_completa

 

CR7 Museum reopened.

CR7 Museum reopened on Monday after being closed for a year. Visitors to this popular museum can learn about Cristiano Ronaldo’s career, the most important moments during his career, the best goals he scored and look at a number of trophies he has won throughout his career.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/05/31/museu-cr7-reabre-depois-de-quase-um-ano-encerrado/

 

Increase in the number of Binter flights to the Canary Islands.

The reopening of the Funchal-Tenerife route in July means that Binter will increase the number of flights between Funchal and the Canary Islands. The airline already has flights between Funchal and Gran Canaria on Thursdays and on Sundays.

From July 10th, Binter will have flights between Funchal and Tenerife on Tuesdays and on Saturdays. On Tuesdays, the flight from Tenerife North – Ciudad de La Laguna Airport will depart at 15h40 and land in Funchal at 17h00. The flight from Funchal will depart at 13h30 and land in Tenerife at 14h50. On Saturdays, the flight from Tenerife will depart at 14h40 and land in Funchal at 16h00. The flight from Funchal will depart at 12h30 and land in Tenerife at 13h50.

Bookings can be made on Binter’s website (www.binter.pt), by phone (291 290 129) or through a travel agency.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/06/01/binter-vai-aumentar-ligacoes-entre-a-madeira-e-as-canarias/

 

Algarve Situation Report Wednesday 2nd June 2021

COVID-19: Unilabs and HPA Saúde Group inaugurate laboratory in Faro.

Unilabs Portugal and the HPA Saúde Group, with the collaboration of the Faro City Council, inaugurated, on Monday, May 31, a new Molecular Biology Laboratory.

The new structure, integrated in the «Summer Safe Algarve» operation, will allow to expand the response capacity in quantity and response time to Covid-19 tests, especially at the level of the standard PCR tests.

The Molecular Biology Laboratory will have the capacity to carry out more than 15,000 tests per day and represents an investment of 1.5 million euros, with the creation of 100 jobs in the laboratory and in the testing network to be set up on the ground, throughout the Algarve region.

With the increase in tourism expected for the summer months in the Algarve, and the mandatory testing to enter Portugal and return to the countries of origin, Unilabs, in partnership with the HPA Saúde Group, will thus strengthen the capacity testing facilities in the region, allowing for a quicker response, without the need to transport samples outside the district.

The screening centre is located at Rua Engenheiro Nuno Abecassis, in Faro, parallel to the Decathlon chain store in Faro.

Hand in hand with the installation of this centre, a network of specific locations and routes programmed in hotel units will be created, in order to expand the ease and convenience in accessing these health services.

 

Covid-19: Rolling Loud Portugal Festival that would take place in Portimão is postponed again to 2022.

The North American festival Rolling Loud, which was due to open in July in Europe with an event in Portimão, has been postponed to 2022 because of the pandemic situation, the organization announced today.

“While we see that the world is opening up again and we are encouraged by many positive indicators about European travel, stays and events, we feel that the rescheduling of the festival is the best in the name of the safety of all our fans traveling to Portugal, to the festival “, reads a statement shared on social networks.

The first edition of Rolling Loud Portugal should have already taken place in Portimão in the summer of 2020, next to Praia da Rocha, but it was postponed to July this year, but it is now rescheduled, due to the pandemic, for the days from 06 to 08 July 2022.

The festival, made mainly of hip hop, had on the poster names like Travis Scott, A $ AP Rocky, Future, Wiz Khalifa, A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie, Chief Keef, City Girls, Dababy, Gucci Mane, Gunna and Meek Mill.

The organization does not give names for 2022, saying only that it is working “in the biggest hip hop line-up that Europe has ever seen”.

According to the organization, the tickets already purchased are valid for 2022, but a refund will also be possible.

Calling itself the largest hip-hop festival in the world, Rolling Loud only admits those over 18 years of age.

 

One dead and one injured in a vehicle crash into a ravine in Silves.

The falling of an off-road vehicle into a ravine in the area of ​​São Bom Homem, in the municipality of Silves, today caused a death and a person slightly injured a source from Civil Protection told Lusa.

According to the District Relief Operations Centre (CDOS) in Faro, the accident that occurred in the middle of the afternoon on Monday resulted in the death of a 62-year-old man and injuries to a 57-year-old woman, both of German nationality.

“The causes of the accident are being investigated” said the source.

In the rescue operations of the victims, 25 members of the firefighters from Silves, from the National Institute for Medical Emergency (INEM) and from the National Republican Guard, from the Municipal Civil Protection of Silves, were involved, supported by an INEM helicopter.

 

Azores

Azores Situation Report Wednesday 2nd June 2021

From our colleague in the Azores 

 

Azores Fare.

Passengers, resident in the Azores can travel back and forth between the islands of the archipelago, starting today, for the maximum price of 60 euros.

Reservations related to the so-called ‘Azores Fare’ can be made through the sales channels of SATA Air Azores, which makes inter-island trips, and travel agencies.

Passengers who have already purchased a ticket with the normal resident fare for inter-island travel starting today (and who have not yet started their travels), may request a refund of the differential for the Azores Fare.

 

Azores Bathing Season 

The bathing season started yesterday, Tuesday 1st June in the Azores. There are 32 zones, and a manual on the use of these spaces is being finalized in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic, which does not provide for fines, but warns users of their responsibility.

82 bathing waters are available for the public to use this year, six of which are for the first time.

 

Covid-19 

29th May. 

18 new positive cases of Covid-19 were diagnosed in the Azores, all in São Miguel, in the context of community transmission, resulting from 2,197 tests carried out in reference laboratories in the Region.

The municipality of Ribeira Grande registered 10 cases (five in Rabo de Peixe, two in Ribeirinha, two in Lomba de São Pedro and one in Pico da Pedra). In the municipality of Ponta Delgada there were three new cases (one in Capelas, one in Santa Clara and one in Fenais da Luz), in the municipality of Vila Franca do Campo there was a new case in São Miguel and in the municipality of Lagoa there are four new cases, in Cabouco.

Tthere were a total of 19 recoveries. With the recovery of the only positive case on the island of São Jorge, it has no positive cases.

30th May. 

32 new positive cases of Covid-19 were diagnosed in the Azores, all in São Miguel, in the context of community transmission, resulting from 2,340 tests carried out in reference laboratories in the Region.

The municipality of Ribeira Grande registered 20 cases (14 in Rabo de Peixe, two in Ribeirinha, two in Matriz, one in Conceição and one in Porto Formoso). In the municipality of Ponta Delgada there were 11 new cases: three in Arrifes, three in Fenais da Luz, two in Capelas, two in São José and one in Fajã de Baixo. In the municipality of Vila Franca do Campo there was a new case, in São Pedro.

There was a total of 21 recoveries

31st May. 

23 new positive cases of Covid-19 were diagnosed in the Azores in, all on the island of São Miguel, in the context of community transmission, following 945 tests carried out in the reference laboratories of the Region.

The municipality of Ribeira Grande registered 11 cases (three in Rabo de Peixe, six in Ribeirinha, one in Matriz and one in Porto Formoso). There were 11 new cases in the municipality of Ponta Delgada (two in Arrifes, two in Capelas, two in Relva, one in São Sebastião, one in São Pedro, one in Santa Clara, one in Fajã de Baixo and one in Fenais da Luz). In the municipality of Vila Franca do Campo, there was a new case in Ponta Garça.

There has been a total of 21 recoveries.

1st June. 

19 new positive cases of Covid-19 were diagnosed in the Azores, all on the island of São Miguel, following 2,312 tests carried out in the reference laboratories of the Region and two in independent laboratories. One case concerns a traveller, non-resident, who tested positive upon arrival. All the other cases refer to the community transmission.

The municipality of Ribeira Grande registers 10 cases (four in Rabo de Peixe, two in Ribeirinha, two in Matriz, one in Maia and one in Lomba da Maia). In the municipality of Ponta Delgada, there are six new cases (three in São Vincente Ferreira, one in Santo António, one in Fenais da Luz and one in Covoada). In the municipality of Vila Franca do Campo there was a new case in Ponta Garça and in the municipality of Nordeste, there was also a new case in Vila do Nordeste.

There have been a total of 31 recoveries.

As of today, there are 13 patients hospitalised, all in the Divino Espírito Santo Hospital in Ponta Delgada, with three of them in intensive care.

The archipelago currently has 277 active positive cases, all on the island of São Miguel.

There are no active local transmission chains and 203 have been extinguished so far. There are 1,396 people under active surveillance.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, 5,578 positive cases of Covid-19 have been diagnosed in the Azores and 5,138 people recovered from the disease.

There were 33 deaths, 79 people who left the archipelago and 51 cases with history of previous cure. Up to now, 506,949 tests have been carried out in the archipelago for SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes Covid-19 disease.

From December 31st, 2020 until May 28th, 126,130 doses of Covid-19 vaccine were administered in the Azores, corresponding to 79,832 people aged 16 years or more who received the first dose, and 46,298 people who received both doses, under the Regional Vaccination Plan.

Portugal situation Report Saturday 29th May 2021

Introduction

Good morning – I am sure you will like me have seen an awful lot of items on social media and in the press about covid 19 and we at Safe Communities are doing our best to provide you all with the most up to date information that is both accurate and relevant.

Whilst it is important to keep abreast of what is happening in the world regarding the pandemic, we must also not lose touch with what is happening around us. As we move into a very warm summer period there are issues which could at some point affect us all and we all need to be aware and to be armed with the right information to make the right decisions as the situation dictates.

“Civil Protection” is a phrase which we use a lot on the website and on the Facebook page. It is a very important part of our “raison d’etre” and whilst it may not seem as important as some subjects we know from experience that at some point we could well be impacted. oIt encompasses a wide range of issues which will become relevant to anyone who lives in Portugal and we genuinely believe that it is in your best interest to be fully aware of what is happening with regards to Civil Protection in your area. Our fire warnings two days before the Monchique fires in 2018, one directed to tourists with some 80,000 + views is a case in point.

We do not have a crystal ball at Safe Communities, but we do have the qualifications and vast experience as an organisation to make informed and timely advice.

To further promote this I will be appearing on KissFm Solid Gold Sunday on this Sunday at 0915 hrs to discuss the importance prevention and self- protection measures concerning rural fires as well as Covid-19 topics – so please tune in.

A reminder that the Council of Ministers on Thursday extended the Situation of Calamity law until 13th June 23.59 hrs. Apart from the movement of various municipalities under the de-confinement plan, we are not aware of any changes in the measures themselves. We await publication of the decree law either today or tomorrow and will inform you accordingly.

We sometimes get feedback from people that they see others often thought to be tourists not wearing masks in public places. So there is no misunderstanding, there is no requirement for people to wear masks outdoors except if social distancing cannot be maintained. It is important to distinguish between circumstances where a mask is required and those which it is not.

As of 27 May, it was reported that 38.5 per cent of new coronavirus infections in the UK were cases of the B.1.617.2 variant of the virus first identified in India, according to data from Public Health England. In Portugal cases of this variant have appeared in 13 municipalities out of a total of 280.counties. Currently there are 37 cases registered with this variant, and the estimate is that the real total is around 160 – a huge difference compared with the UK, but something the authorities here are alert to and monitoring carefully.

Of some concern is the growing number of new daily cases exceeding last week’ average and, according to INSA, the number of new cases of SARS-CoV-2 / COVID-19 infection per 100 000 inhabitants, accumulated in the last 14 days, increasing slightly to 60 in 100,000. Despite this however, only four municipalities out on nearly 280 are not in the final stage of de-confinement with the measures in place effective 1st May. Around half of these new cases are in the Lisbon area. The good news is however that active cases in the Algarve have decreased over 20% in the last week to 233 cases, despite the considerable increase in tourism. Figures will be monitored closely over the next few weeks.

Yesterday we once again published our Welcome poster to tourists appealing to those visiting Portugal to respect the rules that are in place here, not the country from which they originated.

Today we have re-published the Bathing Rules in the table format, so that people can enjoy the fine weather this weekend in safety. Do not forget to download the Info Praia may so you can see the occupancy levels of your chosen beach to avoid a wasted journey. Please share this information.

With all these arrangements in place please have an enjoyable and Safe weekend.

 

Headlines

Covid-19. European Medicines Agency approves use of Pfizer vaccine from age 12

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) approved on Friday the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine against covid-19 in adolescents aged 12 to 15 years, this Friday was announced.

The announcement was made by the head of the Vaccine and Biological Threats to Health Strategy at EMA, Marco Cavaleri, in a press video conference, broadcast from the agency’s headquarters in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, after the extraordinary meeting of the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use.

The vaccine should, as recommended for adults, be administered in two doses with an interval of three weeks. EMA experts consider the vaccine to be safe and effective in adolescents aged 12 to 15, whose use in this age group was already authorized in the United States.

EMA experts consider the vaccine to be safe and effective in adolescents aged 12 to 15, whose use in this age group was already authorized in the United States.

The vaccine from the Pfizer / BioNTech consortium was approved in Europe for people aged 16 and over.

Marco Cavaleri underlined that the decision of the EMA will be communicated to the European Commission, which will give the final approval. However, it will be up to each member state of the European Union to decide when and whether to use the vaccine in young people between 12 and 15 years old.

According to the European drug regulator, the vaccine’s effectiveness in this age group was demonstrated in a clinical trial with approximately 2,000 participants, with the immune response proving to be similar, and sometimes better, to that of young adults.

Marco Cavaleri stressed that the results of efficacy and safety of the vaccine in adolescents will have to continue to be monitored after approval of its use and during vaccination campaigns.

 

Vaccination remains the best weapon

The Minister of Health, Marta Temido, said yesterday that “vaccinations remains the best weapon” to control the Covid-19 pandemic.

At the press conference after meeting with experts at Infarmed, the Minister stressed that the vaccination process “continues to run in a favourable way” and underlined that the goal of having 70% of the adult population vaccinated by the end of the summer must be met.

“We are currently moving into a new self-scheduling age group [over 50 years old] and we are very concerned about not leaving anyone behind,” he added.

The vaccination process makes Portugal now in a «transition phase between a period when there were only non-pharmacological measures, such as the use of masks, hand washing and physical distance, and one where we have the expectation of immunity».

“At the moment we are still trying to assert immunity and the reference that was left by the experts was the need to maintain prudence,” he said.

Marta Temido reiterated the “need to maintain the criteria of incidence”, always taking into account other aspects such as the risk of transmission, the control of variants, the positivity of tests and the monitoring of the effective use of hospitals ».

The Minister also stressed the importance of adhering to the measures on the part of the population: “We need to maintain adherence and the awareness that we are facing a disease that requires specific behaviour to prevent transmission until we are protected”.

 

Covid-19: Risk matrix is ​​an alert system that does not impede the path to normality – Minister

Lisbon, May 28, 2021 (Lusa) – The Minister of Health said today that the risk assessment matrix of the covid-19 pandemic is an alert system that does not jeopardize the path to restoring normality.

The risk matrix, which crosses data on the incidence of cases in the population and the risk of transmission, “does not mean that the return to the desired normality is not carried out, always using the risk matrix as an alert,” said Marta Temido at the end of the periodic meeting to analyse the country’s epidemiological situation, which brought together specialists, members of the Government and the President of the Republic at Infarmed, in Lisbon.

The President of the Republic, who proposed a change in the risk matrix two days ago in view of the increasing immunity rate of the population against covid-19, today stressed at the meeting once again “the perception that the risks are falling” and placed the issue of “public legitimation of the adopted health indicators and criteria”.

Questioned by journalists at the end of the meeting, Marta Temido stated that “the risk matrix is ​​above all a set of warning signs” that it is necessary to “keep in mind for an eventuality” if it is necessary to “go back” in the deflation process.

The Minister of Health underlined that the number of new cases of infection with the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, which causes the covid-19 disease, is influenced by the vaccination process. “Naturally, we all understand that the life we ​​do today already reflects this process,” he said.

 

Covid-19 Data

On Friday, Portugal registered 598 new cases of Covid-19, and one death, according to the daily report of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS).

The main figures from yesterday were

Confirmed Cases: 847,604 (+ 598 / + 0.07 %)
Number of admitted: 246 (+ 13 / + 5.58 %)
Number of ICU admitted: 52 (-1 /-1.89 %)
Deaths: 17,023 (+ 1 / + 0.01 %)
Recovered: 808,047 (+ 515 / + 0.06 %)
Active cases: 22,534 (+82 /+ 0.36%)

Safe Communities comparisons/trends:

Intenisve care, Swedish television

Deaths were lower than last weeks’ daily average; new daily cases were again higher than recoveries and well above last weeks’ daily average. Highest since 21st April 2021. Nearly half of these once again were in Lisbon and Tejo Valley repeating trends over last few days

In hospital there was an Increase, but still 5th lowest for over a year since 27th March 2020 (then 191). Covid-19 patients are 6602 less compared to number in hospital 1st February 2021. In ICU there was a marginal decrease since yesterday, second lowest since 9th September 2020. Active cases saw another increase – a continuing trend since Tuesday. Unusually there was a large increase of over one thousand under surveillance.

It is important not to let our guard down at this crucial time. This means complying with the rules in place, – wearing face masks, social distancing, hygiene and no social gathering.

 

Health

DGS transmission and incidence rates

The R (t) remains unchanged both on the Continent and in the entire national territory, reveals this Friday’s bulletin from the Directorate-General for Health (DGS), halting the growth trend that had been occurring in the last two weeks. The transmissibility index is, as on Wednesday, 1.07 on the Continent and in the entire national territory.

The incidence, on the other hand, has grown: it is now 59.6 in the national territory and 56 in the continent (it is now closer to half of the red line of 120). The values ​​were 57.8 and 54.4, respectively, on Wednesday, but on March 15, when the publication of these values ​​started, they were much higher: 96 and 84.2.

This Friday, Portugal has 18 counties with an incidence of Covid-19 120 cases per 100 thousand inhabitants in the last 14 days, three fewer than those registered a week ago.

According to data released this Friday in the epidemiological bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health, as in the previous bulletin, there are no municipalities at extreme risk, that is, with an incidence of 14 days exceeding 960 cases per 100 thousand inhabitants.
The municipality of Ribeira Grande (619) remains at a very high risk of contagion, with an accumulated incidence of more than 480 cases per 100 thousand inhabitants and the only one in this group.

Of the 18 counties, six have accumulated, in the last 14 days, more than 240 cases per 100 thousand inhabitants, two more in relation to the previous bulletin: Arganil (272), Golegã (262), Northeast (329), Odemira (364), Vila do Bispo (272) and Vila Franca do Campo (326).

The remaining 11 counties have values ​​between 120 and 239.9 cases per 100 thousand inhabitants. With zero cases in the last 14 days, 61 counties are reported, minus 20 in relation to the previous bulletin.

 

New SNS 24 Branches open in the north of country

Three new SNS 24 branches opened today, two in Vila Real (in the district capital and in Alijó) and one in Barcelos, Braga district, the Northern Regional Health Administration (ARS) said today. North).

In a statement, ARS Norte announces that the new branches cover the inhabitants of the parishes of Vilar de Maçada and Alvelos and União de parish of Constantim and Vale Nogueiras.

At these counters, users can make appointments, make teleconsultations, consult exams, access treatment guides, renew chronic medication, assess and record symptoms caused by covid-19 and ask for exemption from user fees, among other health information.

ARS stresses that with these openings the North region “now has 46 units, in 45 parishes”. The units have digital mediators, “duly qualified” employees, who help citizens through two accesses: easy access (the user has autonomy to access digital services) and mediated access (the user accesses with the help of the mediator).

“The inauguration of the SNS 24 Balcão unit’s results from a network of partnerships between the Northern Regional Health Administration, SPMS, EPE, municipalities, parish councils and the Health Center Groups”, adds ARS.

 

Covid-19 Variants

João Paulo Gomes, from INSA, reported yesterday that the British variant already represents 87.2% of the total cases in Portugal. The one in Manaus (Brazil) fell from 4.3% in April to 3% in May, “and it should remain so”.

The South African variant is at 1.9% in May and the Indian is now at 4.6%, with no case detected a month ago. Cases of this variant in nine districts of 13 counties.

Currently, there are 37 cases registered with this variant, and the estimate is that the real total is around 160. “It is expected” that “there is already community transmission” of this variant, warned João Paulo Gomes.

The virus is adapting to an increasingly immunized population,” said the expert, warning of the appearance of mutations “that somehow manage to deceive our immune system” and “cause some infections”.

 

Ricardo Jorge Institute collaborates with the Lisbon Firefighters Regiment in a simulation exercise

The National Institute of Health Doutor Ricardo Jorge (INSA) and the Sapadores Firefighters Regiment of Lisbon (RSBL) carried out, on May 28, in Lisbon, a simulation exercise in a level 3 biosafety laboratory (BSL-3), in order to to prepare the procedures for the removal of a health professional from the laboratory, in the event of an accident of biological origin. This action had the participation of about 10 operational staff, and took place within the scope of the collaboration between the Emergency Response and Biopreparation Unit (UREB) and the RSBL.

In order for the evacuation of the health professional concerned to be carried out in complete safety, the RSBL is required to comply with a set of steps, with natural primacy for the stabilization of the vital signs of the person concerned, decontamination process and respective hospital transport. At the same time, and taking into account the nature of the operation, the use of specific personal protective equipment and the decontamination of all operational personnel are also fundamental procedures.

UREB is responsible for coordinating the specialized, rapid and integrated laboratory response in situations of cases and outbreaks that may pose a risk to Public Health, particularly in the context of cases of outbreaks of infections by emerging and re-emerging microorganisms of natural or deliberate dissemination. . It has laboratory diagnosis for more than twenty infectious agents, including bacteria, hemorrhagic viruses, orthopoxvirus and toxins.

INSA currently has five level 3 biological safety laboratories, nomenclature applicable to clinical, diagnostic, teaching, research, or production facilities, where work is carried out with very pathogenic agents, which can cause serious or potentially lethal diseases through inhalation or other type of exposure. Two of these laboratories, located in its headquarters building in Lisbon, have recently undergone a rehabilitation and refurbishment intervention that allows INSA to improve its response capacity to emergencies and bio-preparation.

Henrique Barros, from the Public Health Institute of the University of Porto, announced yesterday a report from “From the acute infection to chronic consequences” study.

The expert points out that, in terms of incidence, the values ​​are now slightly higher in the North and in Lisbon compared to the same period in the previous year.

The difference, says Henrique Barros, is in the older age group, now more protected.

Hospitalizations are much lower, which reflects “the learning” done over these 15 months of the pandemic.

In children up to the age of 10 and in the age group of 80, positivity fell sharply compared to the previous year. The specialist also pointed out that, now, “the probability of dying has dropped dramatically”: it became 1 in 5 infected people and went to “1 in 20 infected people”.
The infection has become “endemic”, at least socially, he argued. “The infection circulates much less, but you have to be careful,” he added.

Within a year, the fear of being infected and anxiety about the pandemic have dropped significantly, revealing that the Portuguese population is learning to live with the coronavirus.

Covid-19 survey results – Carla Nunes, from Universidade Nova de Lisboa

She said that, in the last week, Lisbon had 3 times more cases than what was expected.

The behaviour of the Portuguese have “had significant changes, in line with the lack of definition”. The study released by Carla Nunes found that 16.2% of respondents said they had already been in groups of 10 or more people, compared to 1.8% on February 19.

According to the same study, there is a “clear recovery” of confidence in health services. Only 14.1% of respondents remain little or not confident in the treatment of covid-19, against 32.7% in February.

To change the risk matrix or not?

 

Redlines and question of updates

Andreia Leite, from the National School of Public Health at Universidade Nova de Lisboa, spoke about the update of the red lines.

The analysis is done through the cumulative incidence and the transmissibility rate, allowing to understand if the epidemic situation is controlled or not. It is called the risk matrix. With vaccination progressing, explains Andreia Leite, it is questionable whether it makes sense to update this framework.

“Incidence and Rt should remain the main indicators”

The official argues that there are several unknowns regarding vaccination, namely regarding the duration of immunity. For Andreia Leite, at this stage, it is important to continue looking at the incidence as it is the indicator that allows us to act in a timely manner. “It allows us to meet international criteria, to understand if the measurement of measures has effects and to identify if there is any change in the characteristics of the virus”.

Experts continue to propose the maintenance of the current set of indicators, stressing the importance of incidence and Rt as “main indicators”, she said.

Individual protection measures

 Raquel Duarte, from the University of Porto, said it was “almost unanimous” among the experts to “maintain the obligation to maintain individual protection measures”. The use of the mask continues to be encouraged, “especially in closed environments”. She also called for testing to be maintained at relevant levels and for “effective ventilation” to be carried out in the interior spaces.

The specialist said that it is necessary to go back “in the imposing character” of the measures, betting on a more pedagogical approach. The reason is that the improvement in the pandemic situation inevitably generates a greater willingness for the population to take to the streets.

Like João Paulo Gomes, Raquel Duarte also wants to watch the borders and “restrict” travel to and from countries with a significant impact of new variants.

Raquel Duarte proposes the creation of three new levels of restrictions – A, B and C -, in addition to the existing ones. At level C, the capacity of restaurants must be limited to 25%, changing to 50% at B. Level A is the least restrictive and will only require compliance with general protection measures.
As for family life, the specialist proposes to lift restrictions on levels B and A, while maintaining the risk assessment taking into account criteria such as age.

5.2 million Vaccinations administered

Vice Admiral Henrique Gouveia e Melo, coordinator of the Task Force for the Vaccination Plan reported at the Infarmed meeting the latest vaccination roll out progress.

According to the official, in the second quarter of the year 1.5 million vaccines will arrive in Portugal. Until Thursday, 5.2 million vaccines were given nearly 3.5 million first doses and 1.8 million second doses.
If everything goes according to plan, he advanced, on the 6th of June, the 40-year-old age group will start vaccinating and, in the last week of June, the 30-year-old. By the end of this week, more than 85% of people aged 60 to 69 will be vaccinated and about 40% of those aged 50 to 59.

Henrique Gouveia e Melo says he has two concerns: maintaining the rate of vaccination and ensuring that geographically isolated communities have all the necessary health care. “I am concerned about some grants for the elderly who, in this process, are left behind”, he said, also showing concern for the bedridden, the hospitalized people and those with comorbidities.

More than 25,000 patients have moved from hospitals to long-term care

More than 25,000 patients who were admitted to public hospitals have been placed in long-term care units since the pandemic began.

The National Network of Integrated Continuous Care (RNCCI) “extended its offer and it was possible to hospitalize an additional 25,300 patients between March 2020 and March 2021”, said the coordinator, Purificação Gandra, who spoke to Lusa about the Barometer of Social Internments, published by the Portuguese Association of Hospital Administrators (APAH).

According to the barometer, which reports data collected on 17 March from 43 public hospitals, the number of social admissions dropped 45% compared to February 2020, but the 853 beds occupied without clinical justification represented a cost of more than 16 million euros and they were mainly due to the lack of vacancies in social institutions.

Purification Gandra considered that the barometer is “very valuable” and helps to understand “many things”, but noted that the measurement used “is exactly the same” that has happened over the years when there were different situations than the one experienced in the pandemic.

“We really had to have different strategies and measures to help fight the pandemic and to free hospital beds and, therefore, we all know the difficulty that the country experienced in terms of hospitalizations and we have to take this into account,” he declared.

“We are very happy with the results” because there was “a great effort on the part of all the teams” in health and social security to try “as much as possible to get answers to these patients”, he added.

 

 

Portugal Situation Report Wednesday 26th May 2021

 

Introduction

I hope you are becoming familiar with our new site which, after 7 months of development, was launched last week. We have received very positive feedback and it seems that one of the objectives to improve ease of access and navigation has been met. We will be featuring this in the Algarve Resident on Thursday and Portugal News on Friday this week. Please visit the site for more information on safety and security here.

Good news is that this coming Sunday is the warm return to Kiss Fm of Owen Gee, host of Solid Gold Sunday, after a break for several months due to health reasons. Safe Communities Portugal has a feature on the show “Crime Check” and I will be on the show at around 09:15 hrs. More details later.

We have seen over the last week or so increasing temperatures and very little rain, if any at all, in the south of the country. The land is becoming drier, and with the high winds recently the rural fire risk has increased. This could be a long and hot summer if May has been anything to go by. The greater the period without rain and with the high temperatures and winds the higher potential for rural fires. Often these have taken place toward the latter part or end of the summer season when the ground is at its driest.

It is therefore important to start making preparations by familiarizing yourselves with all the preventive and self-protections measures should a major fire materialise.   Our new website features risks, warning and major incidents all accessible through the home page so please study these pages particularly if you live in the high-risk parishes.

Whilst on the subject of rural fires a reminder to take care when using BBQs during periods of very high or maximum fire risk. There are laws on this subject in public areas. In your garden please follow the advice concerning safety available on our website and the Facebook post yesterday. Should use of a BBQ result in a fire the user can be held liable.

The current law concerning the Situation of Calamity expires at 23:59 hrs 30th May 2021. The President of the Republic yesterday ruled out any return to a State of Emergency, but from what health officials said and the Prime Minister there is likely to be increased focus on the situation in Lisbon, where yesterday around one half of the new cases were recorded.

In fact, when asked yesterday if the increase in cases in the region could be related to the reopening of tourism in the country, namely for British tourists, António Costa stressed that “there is no correlation established at this moment between this reopening” and the rise in infections. “The cases are more associated with family celebrations and housing conditions than with British tourists,” he said. The fact that new cases in the Algarve have not increased would appear to confirm this.

A reminder that the official bathing season starts Saturday 29th May 2021. Safe Communities has already summarized the law published last week in the form of the table which, since posting on our Facebook page, has reached many people. We are now awaiting the relaunch of the Praia App which will, among other things, determine the capacity of individual beaches throughout the mainland. Please download this to avoid a wasted journey should you chose a beach that has already reached maximum capacity. Once available we will publish.

Yesterday Mike Evans and I visited the Director of Faro Airport, Alerta Borges, and his colleagues to discuss a number of issues concerning Covid-19. A most useful visit, the details of which we will post shortly.

Have a Safe Day

Headlines

European Council: 1.5 billion doses of anti-covid vaccines by the end of the year, 100 million are to donate.

On the second day of the extraordinary European Council, leaders were more optimistic about the evolution of the pandemic and vaccination. By the end of September, the EU is expected to add more than 1 billion doses delivered, enough to inoculate the entire population. The leaders’ agreement is to until December to donate at least 100 million to the poorest countries.

This time, the conclusions of the European Council bring greater optimism regarding the evolution of the pandemic. The 27 no longer complain that it is necessary to speed up vaccination and production, but recognize that the pace “has accelerated” and now “must be maintained”.

The figures taken by the President of the Commission to the extraordinary European Council on Monday and Tuesday support this new stance. Almost half of European adults have already taken at least one dose of the vaccine. So far, 300 million doses have been delivered and the number will rise to 413 by the end of June. Between July and September, another 529 million are expected, which brings the total to more than 1 billion.

Until the end of the year, the value will continue to rise. If the estimates are confirmed and without any new setbacks for pharmaceutical companies, the EU will total 1.5 billion by 31 December. Only the doses delivered until the end of September are enough to vaccinate the entire European population – 450 million – and there are still vaccines left.

With the situation in the EU improving, the debate is also turning to the rest of the world. In the conclusions, there is no reference to the idea of ​​suspending patents to increase production and access to vaccines. The discussion was arranged at the dinner at the Porto Summit and the Global Health Summit, where it was clear that the EU does not see the temporary breach of intellectual property rights as a way to increase the doses delivered across the globe.

Alternatively, they offer to donate “at least 100 million doses, by the end of the year”, to the poorest countries that remain in a health crisis. According to the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, they will be used “to vaccinate health workers and vulnerable groups around the world”.

The figure had already been put forward by Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen, at the Global Health Summit last week. Now it is confirmed by the leaders, who are still committed to helping with vaccine production efforts and developing local production capacity.

Covid-19

This Tuesday Portugal recorded 3 deaths and 375 new cases of Covid-19, according to the daily report of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS). The key figures recorded were:

Confirmed Cases: 845.840 (+ 375 / + 0.04 %)

Number of admitted: 237 (-2 /-0.84 %)

Number of ICU admitted: 52 (-5 /-8.77 %)

Deaths: 17.021 (+ 3 / + 0.02 %)

Recovered: 806.648 (+ 669 / + 0.08 %)

Active cases: 22,171 (-297 /- 1.32%)

Safe Communities comparisons/trends show that: deaths were higher than last weeks’ weekly average, new daily cases were much lower than yesterday and below the weekly average; and recoveries nearly double new cases

In hospital there was a decrease reversing trend from last few days and were the 4th lowest for over a year since 27th March 2020 (then 191) and those in ICU decreased for third day and one of the lowest 9th September 2020. There was also a welcomed moderate decrease for one day in active cases.

Lisbon and Tagus Valley region accounts for almost half of all new cases.

Health

Costa rejects link to increase cases in Lisbon with tourism and celebrations.

The Prime Minister asked for caution to avoid a greater increase in the number of cases of Covid-19 in the Lisbon region, also stressing “there is no correlation” with the reopening of tourism or the celebrations of Sporting.

“The message of caution is a message that we have to keep permanently because it is very clear to everyone that the pandemic has not yet disappeared. Fortunately, vaccination has been evolving at a good pace, but we are far from being covered by the entire population,” he said. António Costa was speaking to Portuguese journalists in Brussels at the end of a two-day European Council.

Asked at the time about the situation in Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, where there has been an increase in the number of infections, the Head of Government repeated the idea: “We will have to continue to be prudent until the pandemic is eradicated and the municipality of Lisbon  is no different from the other 277 counties on the continent and, therefore, the rules that apply to the 278 counties also apply to Lisbon”.

Asked if the increase in cases in the region could be related to the reopening of tourism in the country, namely for British tourists, António Costa stressed that “there is no correlation established at this moment between this reopening” and the rise in infections. “The cases are more associated with family celebrations and housing conditions than with British tourists ,” he said.

There also “doesn’t seem to be much evidence” of a connection with Sporting’s celebrations, he added. “There are some cases of people who, unfortunately, are infected and participated in the festivities, but to be authentic of the images I saw on television of the people who were at the festivities and the number of cases verified would say that there is not a strong correlation there”, he concluded.

Covid-19: Marcelo considered number of cases and excludes return to State of Emergency.

The President of the Republic considered today, in view of the advance of vaccination against Covid-19, the indicators of case numbers and transmission index, and from this excluded a return to the State of Emergency.

Speaking to journalists, outside the National Palace of Ajuda, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa argued that, as the vaccination progresses, “the youngest will still be subject to contagion” with the new coronavirus, “but this will not necessarily have repercussions in hospitalizations, intensive care and deaths “.

Asked if in the Lisbon region there could be setbacks in one or more stages in the deflationary process, the Head of State replied: “The Government has the competence to make this assessment. What I think is that the return to the country of a State of Emergency is out of the question in any case “.

The President of the Republic defended that in addition to the new cases of infection per 100 thousand inhabitants and the transmission rate “there are other indicators that are no less important: the number of deaths, the number of intensive care and the number of hospitalized persons”, and that have to be taken into account.

On the other hand, he pointed out that vaccination against Covid-19 makes the current situation “different than what happened a year ago”.

“We have five million doses of vaccines already, and a pace that will be accelerated, namely, as I said, in the region of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, of tens of thousands of doses per day, covering groups at risk,” he said.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa added that, “despite the high number of cases between 20 and 40 years, this has not had repercussions so far in hospitalizations and in intensive care” and maintained that “it is this consideration that has to be done at every moment”.

“This is a consideration that must be made by those who have the power to do so, and it is the Government,” he insisted.

Vaccinations – weekly report

Lisbon, 25 May 2021 (Lusa) – More than half a million vaccines against Covid-19 were administered in the last week in Portugal, which has 34% of the population with the first dose taken, said today the Directorate-General for Health (DGS) ).

According to the weekly vaccination report released by the DGS, 3,526,688 people are already vaccinated with the first dose and 1,654.55 have already completed the vaccination, with a total of 516,911 doses being administered in the last week.

The vaccination of the age group of people over 80 years old has changed slightly compared to the previous week, with 96% (646,721 elderly people) now with the first dose already administered and 90% (607,257) with the two doses taken.

In the age group between 65 and 79 years, 92% of the people in this group (1,471,719) have already received the first dose, a percentage that drops to 30% (473,148) with regard to complete vaccination.

In the group between 50 and 64 years old, 44% (941,130) have already been vaccinated for the first time and another 13% (285,780) have already received two doses of vaccine against Covid-19.

By regions, DGS data indicates that the North continues to lead in the number of vaccines administered, with a total of 1,756,275 doses, closely followed by Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, where 1,705,909 doses have already been administered.

The Centre is the third region in the country where most people received the vaccine (983,974), followed by Alentejo (292,725), Algarve (199,146), Madeira (132,162) and the Azores (107,122).

With regard to the vaccination coverage of the population by regions, Alentejo leads in the percentage of people who have already received a dose of the vaccine (41%), while the Center has 40%.

Vaccinations

The Secretary of State for Health, Diogo Serras Lopes, assumed this Monday that extending the self-scheduling of vaccination against Covid-19 to people over 50 is a “matter of days” and will occur “very soon”.

“I do not have a specific date yet. I think it is possible [that it will be this week], but if it is not, it is a matter of days. It seems quite evident, not least because the vaccination is taking place at a very fast pace. No, there is no reason for this rhythm to slow down from now on, although there is some prevalence of second doses that decreases the capacity of first doses, “he said.

At this time, the self-scheduling system for vaccination only covers people over 55 years old, after it was initially designed for users over 65 years old and later extended to the population over 60 years

With the increase in the number of cases in the last two weeks in Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, Diogo Serras Lopes was also questioned if a possible vaccination of younger age groups in this region could be a solution in parallel with the reinforcement of the testing capacity already announced for the next few days and similarly to what has already happened in other regions of the country, such as in the Algarve, where the population is younger.

“Let’s see. Right now, we already have more than 90% of the population over 60 years old vaccinated and over 50 years old we are relatively close to reaching 80%, if we haven’t already. The population that has the highest prevalence of serious disease or death is already with a very high degree of protection. I don’t know if it makes sense to have a specific vaccination for a younger population in Lisbon, but, if it makes sense, it will obviously be something that we will consider “, he asserted.

Intensification of testing and contact history in Lisbon and Tagus Valley.

The Secretary of State for Health, Diogo Serras Lopes, said that there will be an intensification of testing and the history of contacts with positive cases in the region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley.

In Vila Franca de Xira, at the ceremony that marked the transition from private clinical management to the State, the Secretary of State stated that “what is going to be done is to reinforce in some way the mechanisms that already exist, in order to be able to test more people and go a little further in the link between people confirmed with Covid-19 or who have been in contact with a person who has been confirmed as Covid-19.

“We are well aware of the experience that we have already accumulated that cutting transmission is absolutely essential” he added, referring that the Metropolitan Area of ​​Lisbon already experienced a similar epidemiological situation at the beginning of last summer and did not rule out a possible setback in the region in the respective rules of deflation.

“There are multiple factors that have been explaining this increase in cases in Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, but we already had a relatively similar situation in June and July 2020. The mechanisms at that time were implemented and today are much more streamlined”, he said. .

Diogo Serras Lopes also stressed that “the rules are clear” and, if necessary, it is possible that the municipalities will move to more restricted rules according to the number of cases per 100 thousand inhabitants in 14 days.

The Secretary of State also said that the intensification of testing will follow the same model as previous approaches, “with PCR tests, rapid tests and the application of tests both sectorally – where outbreaks are effectively sectorial – as well as in family or neighbourhood contexts”.

International Travel

France plans to apply certificate for travel as early as June.

The French Government is considering the entry into force in the country in June of the digital certificate of Covid-19, which the European Union intends to launch as of July 1, in closer coordination with neighbouring countries, including Portugal.

The Secretary of State for European Affairs, Clément Beaune, in an interview this Monday with radio RMC and BFMTV, said that the objective is to make decisions in the first week of June “to anticipate a little” in relation to the EU calendar the entry into force of the document that allows traveling in the community space.

“It is a possibility” that people arriving in France from “countries where the situation is safe” can use the certificate as early as June, “he said.

Beaune said that, together with the French Minister of Health, Olivier Véran, this Monday will also have a meeting with leaders from seven nearby countries with which France has the largest tourist flows, including Spain or Portugal, to “try to have exactly the same rules “.

The French official insisted that the European certificate “is a real coordination progress” that will allow a person to cross the EU’s internal borders if he proves that he has recovered from Covid-19, that he was vaccinated or tested negative.

For those who are vaccinated, France will only accept vaccines authorized by the European Medicines Agency as valid that is, Pfizer-BioNtech, Moderna, AstraZeneca and Janssen, revealed the French Secretary of State.

Other News

Regions

Madeira Situation Report Wednesday 26th May 2021

By our correspondent, Daniel Fernandes

 

Covid-19 update

There were 83 new Covid-19 cases, 68 recoveries and 1 death from Covid-19 in Madeira since the previous Madeira Situation Report. This was the first death from Covid-19 in 59 days.

On Friday, there were 25 new Covid-19 cases (from 1 passenger who had arrived from France and 24 cases of local transmission) and 11 recoveries. The number of patients in hospital increased to 5, although no patients were in intensive care.

On Saturday, there were 18 new Covid-19 cases (from 1 passenger who had arrived from Poland and 17 cases of local transmission) and 16 recoveries. The number of patients in hospital increased to 7, although no patients were in intensive care.

On Sunday, there were 14 new Covid-19 cases (from 1 passenger who had arrived from Moldova and 13 cases of local transmission) and 11 recoveries. The number of patients in hospital increased to 9, 1 of whom was in intensive care.

On Monday, there were 13 new Covid-19 cases (all cases of local transmission) and 14 recoveries. The number of patients in hospital increased to 10, 1 of whom was in intensive care.

And on Tuesday, there were 13 new Covid-19 cases (from 1 passenger who had arrived from Poland, 1 passenger who had arrived from Northern Portugal and 11 cases of local transmission), 16 recoveries and 1 death. A 90 year old female patient, who had pre-existing conditions, died from Covid-19 at Hospital Dr. Nélio Mendonça. She had arrived in hospital from a care home. The number of patients in hospital increased to 11, 2 of whom were in intensive care.

There were 263 active cases on Tuesday, of which 18 had been imported while the other 245 cases had been a result of local transmission. As of Tuesday, there had been 9,400 cases, 9,065 recoveries and 72 deaths.

On Tuesday, there were 18 patients in isolation in a dedicated hotel, 234 patients in isolation in their own accommodation and 11 patients in hospital, 2 of whom in intensive care.

On the same day, there were 70 suspected cases under epidemiological investigation and analysis, which were all linked to patients who tested positive for Covid-19, to calls made to the SRS24 helpline, to referrals by SESARAM (Madeira Regional Health Service) and to airport screening.

There were 15,980 travellers under monitoring by the health authorities. Monitoring is being carried out through the ‘MadeiraSafe’ app. There were also 750 people, who had contact with positive cases, being monitored by the health authorities of several Madeira municipalities and of Porto Santo.

As for Covid-19 testing on passengers who had arrived at Funchal and Porto Santo airports, 208,087 samples had been collected until Tuesday (at 15h30). By Tuesday, 424,835 samples from RT-PCR tests had been processed and 55,146 antigen rapid tests had been carried out in the Autonomous Region of Madeira.

A total of 2,004 antigen rapid tests were carried out in the Region’s schools between May 12th and May 24th, and only 1 came back with a positive result that was confirmed through a PCR test.

The SRS 24 helpline (Regional Health Service – 800 24 24 20) received 635 calls from Thursday to Tuesday. Overall, it has received 50,248 calls.

The Covid-19 mental health helpline (Linha de Acompanhamento Psicológico da Direção Regional de Saúde – 291 212 399 – available every day from 09h00 to 21h00), which was set up to provide emotional and mental support to anyone in Madeira received 23 calls from Thursday to Tuesday. Overall, it has received 3,563 calls.

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/05/21/25-novos-casos-de-covid-19-11-recuperados-282-suspeitos/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/05/22/18-novos-casos-de-covid-19-16-recuperados-131-suspeitos/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/05/23/14-novos-casos-de-covid-19-11-recuperados-81-suspeitos/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/05/24/13-novos-casos-de-covid-19-14-recuperados-126-suspeitos/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/05/25/13-novos-casos-de-covid-19-16-recuperados-70-suspeitos/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/05/25/faleceu-mais-uma-doente-com-covid-19-na-madeira/

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/129838/Depois_de_59_dias_sem_obitos_Madeira_regista_mais_uma_morte_

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/129826/Covid-19_Realizados_2004_testes_rapidos_em_escolas_da_Regiao_e_apenas_um_positivo

 

Vaccination update

As of May 25th, 132,162 vaccine doses (90,436 1st doses & 41,726 2nd doses) had been administered in the Autonomous Region of Madeira since the start of the vaccination campaign on December 31st. This means that 35.6% of the population has been inoculated with 1 vaccine doses while 16.4% of the population has been fully inoculated.

In the previous week, 9,936 vaccine doses were administered, of which 2,326 were 1st doses while 7,610 were 2nd doses.

The new vaccination centre in Ribeira Brava (Centro de Vacinação da Ribeira Brava) has opened on May 23rd at Pavilhão da Serra de Água (Sports Hall), in the parish (freguesia) of Serra de Água, with the inoculation of 600 people (1st & 2nd doses). The Municipality of Ribeira Brava started to provide assistance in the transportation of people who are scheduled to be inoculated. Until last week, the vaccination centre had been located at the Ribeira Brava Health Centre (Centro de Saúde da Ribeira Brava).

The plan for this week is to continue vaccination throughout the Region, with a particular focus on inoculation of 1st and 2nd vaccine doses to Porto Santo residents on May 28th and 29th.

A total of 32,000 Johnson & Johnson vaccine doses are expected to arrive in the Region until June. Miguel Albuquerque, President of the Madeira Regional Government, revealed that although 7,000 doses have already arrived in the Portuguese mainland, their delivery to Madeira is delayed. It is hoped this specific shipment will arrive in the Region in the following days. He dismissed the slower pace of inoculations recorded in the previous week and believes it will be possible to recover and to keep the aim of vaccinating 70% of the population until September.

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/129748/Mais_de_132_mil_vacinas_contra_a_covid-19_administradas_na_Madeira

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/129774/7_mil_vacinas_da_Johnson_chegam_nos_proximos_dias

https://www.jm-madeira.pt/regiao/ver/129578/Covid-19__Foram_vacinadas_hoje_600_pessoas_no_pavilhao_da_Serra_de_Agua

 

Water supply disruptions

There will be water supply disruptions in the following places:

26th May (TODAY – 09h00-16h00) – Parish (Freguesia) of São Martinho:

– Rua Dr. Pita (between Caminho das Virtues and the roundabout at Rua das Virtudes)

– Urbanização da Azinhaga da Nazaré

– Rua Henrique Franco

– Alameda Danilo Gouveia

26th May (TODAY – 09h00-13h00) – Parish (Freguesia) of Câmara de Lobos:

– Torre

28th May (00h00-04h00) – Parish (Freguesia) of Câmara de Lobos:

– Vila

– Serrado da Adega

28th May (09h00-13h00) – Parish (Freguesia) of Câmara de Lobos:

– Palmeira

– Palmeira de Baixo

– Torre

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/05/25/cmf-avisa-para-cortes-de-agua-na-freguesia-de-s-martinho/

https://funchalnoticias.net/2021/05/22/arm-avisa-para-cortes-de-agua-em-camara-de-lobos-3/

 

 Algarve Situation report Wednesday 26th May 2021

Covid-19: President of AHETA says tourism demand is far from satisfactory.

British tourist bookings for hotels in the Algarve have increased “above expectations”, but the numbers are far from “satisfactory” for the region, the President of the sector’s largest regional association told Lusa today.

“There is a very positive demand from the British market in the Algarve, even above expectations, but we cannot go overboard due to the fact that there is one or another hotel with high occupancy levels,” the president of the Association of Hotels and Enterprises told Lusa. Algarve Tourist Attractions (AHETA).

According to the director, “the scale of the climb is not yet known and requires careful analysis”, as there are “many units and developments still closed in the Algarve and only reopening in June”, so it will only be possible to know at the end of this month ” the real impact of demand on the units that are working.”

According to Elidérico Viegas, tourist demand “grew gradually and progressively, as soon as it was known that Portugal would be included in the ‘green list’ of safe destinations that exempts citizens from quarantining on their return to the United Kingdom, which happened from 17 May.

However, for the leader of AHETA, the numbers “very satisfactory that we have been talking about in the last few days correspond to one or the other unit and not to the average of the Algarve”, creating even “some disappointment in the entrepreneurs who are not seen in these results”.

There is a whole machine that has been idle for a year and a half and needs to be retrofitted, because it is not enough to put it to work at cruising speed. It is a gradual process and it will take some time for it to work in full”, recalled the person in charge.

The full functioning of the hotel units is also, according to the leader, “dependent on the stability of the markets that emit tourists, mainly the British and the national market, which may be affected by a possible setback caused by the pandemic” of Covid-19.

 

Tavira beaches open bathing season with “gold” quality.

The four beaches in the municipality of Tavira (Barril, Cabanas, Ilha de Tavira and Terra Estreita) were distinguished, once again, with the classification of “beaches with gold quality” by Quercus – National Association for Nature Conservation.

Tavira was thus recognized, along with 391 beaches, of which 329 are coastal, 51 inland and 11 transition. The purpose of this award is to highlight the beaches that, for five consecutive years (2016-2020), have bathing water of excellent quality.

The assessment, carried out by Quercus, results from the analysis carried out in accordance with the Bathing Water Directive.

As in the past year, the Câmara de Tavira sends the message that Quercus reinforces the need for bathers to comply with the sanitary rules defined by the Directorate-General for Health, when attending bathing areas. In this context, it is requested that crowds of people are avoided when accessing the beaches and the sand. It also appeals to the civic fulfilment of those who frequent the beaches, namely, “with regard to the correct disposal of disposable masks, which must be placed in trash bins and never abandoned in the natural environment”, he concludes.

 

Rural Fire at the entrance to Faro.

A fire has already been overcome in an area “with debris and pasture”, at the entrance to the city of Faro, which broke out this Sunday, around 6 pm.

Although it was quickly overwhelmed and did not cause “any damage to structures or victims”, according to the Faro District Relief Operations Command (CDOS) confirmed, the column of black smoke was visible from a long distance.

The quick response was made by the Sapadores de Faro Firefighters, the Faro Volunteers – Cruz Lusa and the Olhão Firefighters, who, with the help of an aerial means, quickly controlled the flames.

In addition to the helicopter, 29 operational fire supporters, supported by 9 vehicles, were involved in fighting the fire.

 

Azores Situation Report Wednesday 26th May 2021

By our Azores Correspondent

Inaugural Flight.

The Regional Government of the Azores, the Association of Tourism and the carrier Lufthansa considered this Sunday that the beginning of the company’s connections to São Miguel signals the recovery of the tourist sector in the region, affected by the Covid-19.

At 12:22 local time, Lufthansa’s 320-Neo aircraft, arrived from Frankfurt, Germany, with a capacity for 179 passengers, it landed for the first time at Ponta Delgada airport, on the island of São Miguel.

Awaiting the inaugural flight of the German company in São Miguel, which had an occupancy rate of around 80%, was a delegation of members of the Government of the Azores, ANA Airports and the air carrier.

Mota Borges considered the beginning of the connection to be “recognition” of the Azores’ tourism potential and said he hoped the operation would “infect other markets”.

“People want to travel, the Azores offers everything you need for a safe trip. There is so much to do on this island, not only on this island, but across the archipelago. It is truly safe by nature”.

The President of the Azores Tourism Association, Carlos Morais, praised the operation that aims to bring about 4 thousand passengers from the German market, the second most important tourist market in the Azores (the first is the national market).

“Today is a historic day for tourism in the Azores, and one of the largest airlines in the world is making its first flight to the autonomous region of the Azores. There are a total of 22 flights and it’s a very important market for the Azores“.

From the 25th of June, Ponta Delgada will also have a direct connection with Geneva, Switzerland, on Fridays, operated by Swiss (belonging to the Lufthansa group).

 

Death 

The Regional Health Authority has reported that there has been another death.  An 86-year-old woman, who was hospitalized at the Hospital do Divino Espírito Santo, in Ponta Delgada”.

She was a resident of the parish of São Sebastião, in the municipality of Ponta Delgada.
The number of fatalities caused by Covid-19 in the Azores archipelago has risen to 33 since the beginning of the pandemic.

Over the last few days there have been a number of cases and recoveries.

22nd May 

24 new positive cases of Covid-19 were diagnosed in the Azores, all in São Miguel, in the context of community transmission, resulting from 1,914 tests in the reference laboratories in the Region.

The municipality of Ribeira Grande registered 18 new cases (13 in Rabo de Peixe, four in Ribeirinha and one in Conceição). In the municipality of Ponta Delgada there are four new cases (one in São José, one in Santa Clara, one in Capelas and one in Arrifes). In the municipality of Vila Franca do Campo there is a new case, in Ponta Garça, and in the municipality of Lagoa there is a new case, in Santa Cruz.

There was a total of 18 recoveries.

During the epidemiological investigation, it was found that a positive case initially allocated to the parish of Matriz, municipality of Ribeira Grande, resides in the parish of São José, municipality of Ponta Delgada, so the data shown in the table reflect this change.

23rd May 

30 new positive cases of Covid-19 were diagnosed in the Azores, 29 in São Miguel and one in Faial, resulting from 2,177 tests carried out in the region’s reference laboratories.

In Faial, the case now diagnosed resulted from screening, upon arrival, to a traveller, resident in Feteira.

In São Miguel, the municipality of Ribeira Grande registered nine cases (three in Rabo de Peixe, three in Matriz, one in Ribeirinha, one in Ribeira Seca and one in Pico da Pedra). In the municipality of Ponta Delgada there are also nine cases (four in São Vicente Ferreira, three in Capelas, one in São Sebastião and one in Arrifes). In the municipality of Vila Franca do Campo there are two new cases (one in Ponta Garça and the other in Água de Alto). In the municipality of Lagoa there are two new cases in Rosário, and in the municipality of Nordeste there are seven new cases, all in Salga.

There was a total of 30 recoveries.

24th May 

12 new positive cases of Covid-19 were diagnosed in the Azores, all in São Miguel, resulting from 1,207 tests carried out in the Region’s reference laboratories.

The municipality of Ribeira Grande registered eight cases (five in Ribeira Seca, one in Rabo de Peixe, one in Ribeirinha and one in Santa Bárbara). In the municipality of Ponta Delgada there is a new case in Livramento and in the municipality of Vila Franca do Campo there are three new cases (one in Ponta Garça, one in São Pedro and one in Água de Alto).

There was a recovery in Terceira, Praia da Vitória municipality, Lajes parish.

25th May 

33 new positive cases of Covid-19 were diagnosed in the Azores in the last 24 hours, all on the island of São Miguel, following 1,909 tests carried out in the reference laboratories of the Region. All cases concern community transmission.

There are 20 new cases in the municipality of Ribeira Grande (18 in Rabo de Peixe, one in Ribeirinha and one in Conceição). In the municipality of Ponta Delgada, there are five new cases (two in São Vincente Ferreira, one in Santo António, one in Capelas and one in Rosto do Cão (Livramento). There are four new cases in the municipality of Vila Franca do Campo (three in Ponta Garça and one in Ribeira Seca). There are two new cases in the municipality of Lagoa, both in Santa Cruz. In the municipality of Nordeste, a new case was diagnosed in the parish of Salga and in the municipality of Povoação there is a new case in the parish of Furnas.

During the epidemiological investigation of the case above mentioned, that was initially allocated to the parish of Arrifes, municipality of Ponta Delgada, it was found she was now residing in the parish of São Sebastião, in the same municipality, so this data was changed.

As of today, six patients are in the region’s hospitals, with five at the Divino Espírito Santo Hospital in Ponta Delgada (one in intensive care) and one at Santo Espírito Hospital in Angra do Heroísmo.

The archipelago currently has 264 active positive cases: 257 on the island of São Miguel, three on the island of Terceira, two on the island of Pico, one on the island of Faial and one on the island of São Jorge. There is one active transmission chain on the island of Terceira and 202 have been extinguished so far. 1,056 people are under active surveillance.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, 5,404 positive cases of Covid-19 have been diagnosed in the Azores and 4,978 people recovered from the disease. There were 33 deaths, 79 people who left the archipelago and 50 cases with history of previous cure. Up to now, 491,690 tests have been carried out in the archipelago for SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes the Covid-19 disease.

From December 31st, 2020 until May 20th, 106,631 people aged 16 years or more were vaccinated in the Azores, corresponding to 68,352 people who received the first dose, and 38,278 people who received both doses, under the Regional Vaccination Plan.