Ro Insider
Coronavirus in Romania: Head of emergency service recommends people wear masks in public places, measure compulsory in several counties

Raed Arafat, the head of the Emergency Situations Department (DSU), has recommended people start wearing masks when in public places, whether medical or improvised ones.

In a Facebook post he explained that the authorities have started to recommend the wearing of masks or any other protective clothing over the nose and the mouth in public places as the practice can help reduce the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus in the community.

“Remember, a medical mask is not needed to protect yourself and others… you can improvise,” he said.

Arafat explained that, at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, wearing a mask was only recommended to people with symptoms for pertinent reasons, such as the limited supply of masks and the need to ensure that they reach health workers.

As medical masks are hard to find or have very high prices, home-made alternatives can be used, he said.

“It will take a while until we get used to this practice but, from what I can see and the information we have, it would be good to start introducing this practice as soon as possible, regardless of who might laugh at us or how funny or strange we might look,” Arafat said.

The local authorities in several counties in the country have introduced the compulsory wearing of masks in public places. In Suceava, the northeastern Romania city that is the largest Covid-19 hotbed in the country, the wearing of masks, medical or improvised, became compulsory on Monday, April 6, Hotnews.ro reported. The same measure applies to the eight nearby localities that have been placed under lockdown alongside Suceava. A similar measure has been introduced in the counties of Maramureș, Vaslui, and Galați, Mediafax reported. In Iași county, people need to wear masks or other protective gear in closed public spaces and when using the public transport, Profit.ro reported.

Meanwhile, prime minister Ludovic Orban said the wearing of masks cannot be made compulsory as the stocks are not sufficient and they cannot be sold at an accessible price.

“We cannot impose such a measure as long as there is no capacity to offer them and the possibility to purchase the needed masks as decent prices […] Of course, it is better to wear a mask but we are trying to impose obligations that can be implemented,” Orban said, quoted by Digi24.ro.

Orban also explained that some 4 million masks are to be brought to the country, a set of 2 million in the coming period, and another set of 2 million around Easter.

“We did not have any strategic stocks. We got to work long before the first case was reported in Romania, we faced a crazy international market, with a sharp competition, the demand exploded. We are starting to find ourselves in a better situation, we already have contracts, rolled out through Unifarm or the National Office for Centralized Acquisitions (ONAC) […]. We have to receive in the coming period an important quantity of FFP2 and FFP3 masks. Two million masks are about to reach the country, and another transport, around April 19, will bring another 2 million masks,” Orban told Digi24.

(Photo: Alberto Mihai/ Dreamstime)

[email protected]

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Ro Insider
Coronavirus in Romania: Head of emergency service recommends people wear masks in public places, measure compulsory in several counties

Raed Arafat, the head of the Emergency Situations Department (DSU), has recommended people start wearing masks when in public places, whether medical or improvised ones.

In a Facebook post he explained that the authorities have started to recommend the wearing of masks or any other protective clothing over the nose and the mouth in public places as the practice can help reduce the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus in the community.

“Remember, a medical mask is not needed to protect yourself and others… you can improvise,” he said.

Arafat explained that, at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, wearing a mask was only recommended to people with symptoms for pertinent reasons, such as the limited supply of masks and the need to ensure that they reach health workers.

As medical masks are hard to find or have very high prices, home-made alternatives can be used, he said.

“It will take a while until we get used to this practice but, from what I can see and the information we have, it would be good to start introducing this practice as soon as possible, regardless of who might laugh at us or how funny or strange we might look,” Arafat said.

The local authorities in several counties in the country have introduced the compulsory wearing of masks in public places. In Suceava, the northeastern Romania city that is the largest Covid-19 hotbed in the country, the wearing of masks, medical or improvised, became compulsory on Monday, April 6, Hotnews.ro reported. The same measure applies to the eight nearby localities that have been placed under lockdown alongside Suceava. A similar measure has been introduced in the counties of Maramureș, Vaslui, and Galați, Mediafax reported. In Iași county, people need to wear masks or other protective gear in closed public spaces and when using the public transport, Profit.ro reported.

Meanwhile, prime minister Ludovic Orban said the wearing of masks cannot be made compulsory as the stocks are not sufficient and they cannot be sold at an accessible price.

“We cannot impose such a measure as long as there is no capacity to offer them and the possibility to purchase the needed masks as decent prices […] Of course, it is better to wear a mask but we are trying to impose obligations that can be implemented,” Orban said, quoted by Digi24.ro.

Orban also explained that some 4 million masks are to be brought to the country, a set of 2 million in the coming period, and another set of 2 million around Easter.

“We did not have any strategic stocks. We got to work long before the first case was reported in Romania, we faced a crazy international market, with a sharp competition, the demand exploded. We are starting to find ourselves in a better situation, we already have contracts, rolled out through Unifarm or the National Office for Centralized Acquisitions (ONAC) […]. We have to receive in the coming period an important quantity of FFP2 and FFP3 masks. Two million masks are about to reach the country, and another transport, around April 19, will bring another 2 million masks,” Orban told Digi24.

(Photo: Alberto Mihai/ Dreamstime)

[email protected]

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