In an assessment of the epidemiological situation, Graça Freitas said that the number of new cases of Covid-19 in the last seven days was still around 60,000, a number higher than the peaks of previous epidemic curves, except for last winter.

“We are still far from reaching a low level of activity that allows us to reach a safe level” that allows for us “to have a relaxed and safe summer”, said Graça Freitas, considering that despite being stable and with a decreasing trend, the incidence of the SARS-CoV coronavirus -2 is still high, as is transmissibility.

“Great concern”

Graça Freitas stressed that mortality from Covid-19 brings “a great deal of concern”, adding that it is at 28.6 deaths within 14 days per million inhabitants, a value that remains above the threshold of 20 deaths within 14 days per million inhabitants defined by the European Center for Disease Control (ECDC) and which is one of the references determined by the Government for the country to move to an unrestricted level of pandemic control.

The director-general of Health noted that there is already a “slightly decreasing trend” in mortality, but, she noted, “we will see if it continues or not”.

Personal protective measures

In view of this epidemiological situation, Graça Freitas recommended the adoption of “personal protection measures”, namely vaccination with a booster dose for those who are eligible, the use of the mandatory mask in closed spaces, hand washing, respiratory etiquette, and the recommendation to take a test for Covid-19 before going to a get-together.

She also recommended that “out of caution” people should keep physical distance with people they do not usually live with.

All these measures, she said, are also important to prevent other respiratory infections, such as the flu and other respiratory viruses that are also in circulation.

Not over yet

“The pandemic did not end globally and neither in Portugal and we do not know how the next few months will be and, therefore, all the protection that we manage to build will be good protection for the future”, she declared.

"I appeal for the participation of all citizens in the sense of protecting themselves and others, especially the most vulnerable who are the oldest, sickest and people who are in institutions", insisted Graça Freitas.