Nationwide restrictions imposed starting Saturday, March 20
Limited services in shopping hall, closed hotels, swimming pools, theatres and cinemas - all this and many more other restrictions will be in place from Saturday on across Poland. The official ordinance was published on Friday in the Journal of Laws.
Theatres, shopping malls, hotels and cinemas will be closed from Saturday until after the Easter holidays, Health Minister Adam Niedzielski told a news conference. on Wednesday. Schools will also move entirely to online learning, even for the youngest children.
"We no longer have the ability only to bring forward regional restrictions. The only way forward right now is to broaden these restrictions to all of Poland," Niedzielski said.
"If this move does not result in easing the pandemic, or at least in slowing down the third wave, the next steps would be a typical lockdown... in which we would be closing absolutely everything," the minister added.
Nationwide restrictions starting March 20
Suspended activity of the following businesses and institutions:
- shopping malls - except for grocery shops, pharmacies, newsagents, bookstores, pet stores, home improvement and construction stores, hairdressers, opticians, banks and laundry,
- hotels - except for business travel and workers' hostels,
- theatres, museums, art galleries - except for rehearsals, practice, and online events,
- cinemas - it's also forbidden to screen movies community and cultural centres,
- swimming pools - except for those providing medical aid and for members of national teams,
- saunas, solariums, Turkish baths, body slimming salons, casinos,
- fitness clubs and gyms,
- skiing slopes,
- sport facilities - except for professional athletes and without spectators,
- online classes for for grades I-III.
Furthermore, wearing face masks is mandatory in public places.
It's also forbidden to dine in restaurants. Takeaway and delivery service are allowed.
In shopping malls, markets and post offices there is a maximum limit of 1 person per 10 m2 in places up to 100 m2, as well 1 person per 15 m2 in those larger than 100 m2.
Additionally, a maximum of 5 people can take part in public gatherings. The participants must wear face masks and keep 1,5-metre distance from others. There must be at least 100 metres between two separate gatherings. Up to 5 people can participate in parties and events organised at home, except for the organisers and people living with them.
Coronavirus in Poland
Poland's total number of COVID-19 cases surpassed 2 million on Friday, according to health ministry data, as the country grapples with a third wave of the pandemic.
The country of 38 million has reported 2,010,244 coronavirus cases and 48,807 deaths in total since the start of the pandemic, the ministry data showed.
Poland surpassed one million cases at the start of December as the second wave of the pandemic slowed, but has faced a recent consistent and steep rise in cases fuelled by the more contagious variant of the virus first found in Britain.
That variant makes up more than 60% of cases in Poland and will soon reach 80%, a Polish health ministry spokesman said on Friday.
On Friday Poland reported 25,998 new coronavirus cases and 419 COVID-related deaths, carrying out 86,100 tests in the last 24 hours.
The previous day it reported 27,278 new daily coronavirus cases, the highest number so far this year.
Źródło: TVN24 News in English, PAP, Reuters
Źródło zdjęcia głównego: PAP/Paweł Supernak