Portugal’s government – albeit in technical limbo – has extended the State of Alert the country is in due to the “increase in incidence” of SARS-CoV-2 infections.
Notwithstanding – and some might suggest* linked to – the stellar vaccination roll-out, minister of health Marta Temido has said there has been “a worsening of the situation over the last week”.
At a press conference following today’s Council of Ministers, Ms Temido acknowledged that this worsening “was in some way expected” and in line with the situation across the rest of Europe.
The national rolling 14-day average of cases has now reached 94 per 100,000 inhabitants, which although higher than previous weeks, is still well below the European average of 235 cases per 100,000.
Justifying the maintenance of Portugal’s State of Alert – the lowest ‘state’ on the scale of emergencies – Ms Temido said that in spite of the country’s relatively favourable context “the virus continues to transmit and circulate and although it is causing less serious disease and fatal consequences in significantly lower numbers, greater circulation tends to correspond to a higher number of cases of illness”.
A short clip on SIC’s news website today shows the minister suggests further measures and “adaptations” could be imposed “if necessary”.
For now, a renewed awareness campaign will be mounted, to remind citizens that they should continue with measures of self-protection as the colder weather looms.