Update 29 November:
- face masks are to be worn everywhere.
- gatherings of all types are now forbidden, except when among members of the same family and household.
- limits to movement have been put in place: curfew remains unchanged (see previous update), plus citizens cannot leave the territory of their municipality except for health care services, work and services related to necessary care for a close relative or funeral.
Update 20 October:
The Government undertook a number of transition measures to try to modify the further course of the epidemic:
- a curfew is now in place for the entire country, including stores, between 21.00 and 6.00 (starting the evening of 20 October 2020).
- from 16 October 2020, it is compulsory to wear masks in open space areas for everyone over 12 years of age.
- gatherings are now to be limited to 6 persons, except in cases of members of the same family or household.
Since 18 April 2020, owners of private ground out of their municipality of residence are allowed to access them for maintenance or seasonal works, but they need to be in possession of a proof of property and a signed declaration of intent of movement.
From 18 April 2020 individuals can again use public open-air sports infrastructure on condition that social distancing is applied, and that regular maintenance and cleaning is performed as required.
As of April 28, weddings can again take place but only the couple and their best men and maids of honour can be present.
Update June 5: Gatherings of up to 200 persons are allowed but physical distancing must be respected.
Update 26 June: Wearing face masks, which had become recommended in the time after the end of the epidemic had been declared, is now compulsory again for all closed spaces, including all types of public transport. The same applies also to hand disinfection in the same spaces.
Update 13 July:
The maximum number of people allowed in spontaneous gatherings has been reduced to 10; it is possible to have an organised gathering (e.g. a wedding) of up to 50 people, but the organiser needs to ensure a complete list of attendees with their contact addresses, e-mails and mobile phone numbers for potential contact tracing; it is still possible to organise cultural and sports events of up to 500 attendees, provided that distancing and disinfection are ensured and that the organiser received a special permit from the National Institute of Public Health
Masks are obligatory in all closed public spaces and on all public transport.
During the ‘containment’ phase in the second half of February and first days of March, physical distancing was advised only for those who were isolating and in quarantine as well as their contacts, either because they were cases or contacts of confirmed cases or had returned from a high-risk area and were developing symptoms. In this phase, physical distancing was compulsory only for the persons who tested positive and their close contacts.
After the declaration of the epidemic and the activation of the Pandemic Plan on 12 March, the phase of mitigation was initiated. The Government started limiting and banning public gatherings, such as public and cultural events, since the first case was reported on 4 March 2020. First, gatherings of more than 500 persons were banned, later of more than 100. Already at that stage, two large European skiing events that were supposed to take place in the second half of March were cancelled.
On Monday 16 March 2020, there was a general recommendation to start respecting some level of physical distancing. This was partly triggered by the closing of educational facilities and suspension of public transportation. There was a recommendation for the public to stay at home and avoid close contact with persons, particularly individuals who were considered vulnerable. Elderly and other vulnerable individuals (those with chronic conditions, pregnant women), were also requested to stay at home in isolation for the foreseeable future and restrict non-essential visits. On 16 March 2020 all restaurants and cafés were closed for all but home delivery food sales. The same applied to all services which involve personal contact.
Primary, secondary schools, kindergartens and universities were closed from 16 March 2020 (some universities suspended personal attendance already a week before that), but cover was provided for children whose parents are essential workers (to enable functioning of the health and social care services, transport and utilities as well as food supply), children with disabilities (to ensure continuity of care) and those children considered to be vulnerable.
Since 23 March, physical distancing became mandatory for everyone, with the option for the police to enforce this if necessary (fines are set at a minimum of 400 EUR). This was made more restrictive on 29 March when movement was limited to the municipality of residence with these exceptions:
- Arrival and departure from work
- Carrying out economic, agricultural and forestry activities
- Working on removing direct threats to health, life and property
- Attending to and assisting persons, who need support and care of their family members
- Access to pharmacies, health and sanitary services
- Access to foreign diplomatic and consular services
- Access to emergency care and assistance
- Access to performing services related to the judiciary system
- Access to services for persons with special needs
On the same date, further measures were introduced, such as: wearing masks and gloves in closed public spaces, such as shops, pharmacies or health and social care institutions, obligatory disinfection of common spaces in apartment buildings twice a day.
On 10 April an additional measure was adopted. People over 65 years of age can now go shopping in a supermarket or any food store only between 8 and 10am and in the last hour before closing.
Update 21 April:
Primary schools’ final tests, which have a screening value, will not be carried out this year. On the other hand, the Ministry of Education still intends to carry out the baccalaureate finals, which are considered essential due to their importance for applications to universities. There are still controversies on how these finals can be carried out respecting distancing and other protection measures.