The Assistant Secretary of State and Health, António Lacerda Sales, has stated that it is necessary to “wait with tranquility” for the easing of restrictions in Portugal to contain the covid-19, since the goal that allows reaching level zero has not yet been reached.
“We really need to get to that level of 20 deaths per million inhabitants. There has been a downward trend and, therefore, we will wait to get there as soon as possible, so that later political decisions can be taken depending on what your support and technical decision is”, said António Lacerda Sales on the sidelines at the inauguration of the National Observatory on Aging, in Alte, Loulé, earlier this week.
Sales said that, at the moment, Portugal still has 25 deaths per million inhabitants within 14 days, a value still higher than the threshold of 20 deaths.
Moving from level one to level zero of restrictions will occur only when the threshold of 20 deaths in 14 days per million inhabitants is reached, one of the references determined by the Government for the country to lift the pandemic control restrictions, defined by the European Center for Disease Control (ECDC).
The Secretary of State added that, however, “another of the goals for the end of restrictions has already been achieved, ” less than 170 covid-19 patients are occupying beds in intensive care units, leaving 60 to 65 bed vacancies”.
According to António Lacerda Sales, it is necessary to “wait calmly, with serenity” to reach “these epidemiological indicators”, which are “fundamental” so that “the right political measures can be taken afterwards”.
At level zero, the mask will not be mandatory, but only recommended for those who have symptoms, digital certificate is no longer required and testing will only be done when there is an indicator of the presence of the disease.
According to the report on the epidemiological situation released last Friday, mortality from covid-19 was at 27.7 deaths in 14 days per million inhabitants, which corresponds to a decrease of 20% relative to to the previous period (34.6 deaths).