Just under a week since implementing a nationwide shutdown, coronavirus continues to spread throughout Austria.
On Wednesday, the number of new daily infections was more than 6,000 for the first time and more than 7,000 on Thursday. On Saturday, the number of new cases crossed 8,000 for the first time.
Hospitals are feeling the strain, with a 58 percent increase in new hospitalisations over the past week. There are now 459 people in intensive care in Austria, with 80 new admissions coming across the weekend.
The federal government will decide at the end of the week whether new lockdown measures are necessary to “prevent the collapse of the healthcare system” reports Kurier.
Health Minister Rudolf Anschober laid the situation bare.
“The next few days will be days of making a decision. If the partial lockdown does not relax the increases (in cases), then we will have to tighten the partial lockdown.”
On Sunday, Anschober appealed to the population to reduce contact with people by half, to wear masks, keep one metre of distance and to use the Stop Corona App.
The health directors of each of Austria’s federal states issued a joint statement on Sunday calling for the public to adhere to the measures.
“The situation is serious,” said the statement.
Authorities in Upper Austria have already put in place a ban on visiting care homes and hospitals, which will apply from November 10th.