COVID-19 Update 05.11/20- Measures as announced by the Minister of Health Mr Constantinos Ioannou

As per speech of the Minister of Health, Mr. Constantinos Ioannou Here in English, the following measures announced are categorized in three groups as follows:

Category A. Medium-term measures in force across Cyprus for the period 5 November 2020 – 15 January 2021:

  1. The regulation for the operation of indoor and open-air cinemas, theatres and performance halls at 50% capacity, continues to be in force.
  2. The holding of conferences, assemblies and/or events in indoor conference venues, is allowed with a maximum number of participants set at 250 persons, in accordance with the protocol and the measure for social distancing at 3 sq.m. per person, regardless of the square metres of each facility. Intermissions or coffee/snack/cocktail breaks within the framework of the event are not allowed.
  3. Retail businesses of beverages and foodstuffs (supermarkets, minimarkets, butcheries, etc) and pharmacies, shall only serve persons who are over 65 years old and persons with disabilities, from opening time until 9am and from 1pm until 2pm.
  4. The use of a facemask by the general population, aged 12 years and above, becomes mandatory in indoor and outdoor areas, according to the instructions issued by the Ministry of Health.
  5. As regards the holding of weddings and christenings, from 13 November 2020 until 15 January 2021, cocktail parties and well-wishing ceremonies are not allowed. Physical presence is only allowed at lunch or dinner, with a maximum number of attendees set at 150 persons. It is understood that the maximum number of persons per table cannot exceed 6 persons.

Category B. Contingency island-wide measures, in force as of the 5th until the 30th of November:

  1. The maximum number of persons allowed to gather in houses and public places, with the exception of catering establishments, is set at 10 per house/group, inclusive of under-aged children.
  2. Operation of catering establishments and enterprises is permitted until 10:30 p.m. Catering services are considered the following: restaurants, catering services in hotels and tourist accommodations, catering services in malls and department stores, taverns, cafeterias, pizzerias, pubs, snack-bars and bars, coffee shops, canteens and/or refectories of sports clubs, cultural clubs, associations, societies, etc. It is clarified that the above establishments may provide delivery services after 10:30 p.m. Catering services at the Airports of Larnaka and Pafos are excluded from the prohibition.
  3. The maximum number of persons allowed in catering establishments is set to 75 persons in indoor areas and to 150 persons in outdoor areas.
  4. The maximum number of persons per reservation/table/group in catering establishments is not to exceed 6 persons.
  5. The movement of citizens is banned from 11 at night until 5 in the morning of the following day, excluding movement for emergency medical reasons (to/from a pharmacy, hospital) or for work purposes by presenting a relevant certification or documentation.
  6. Church services and other form of religious worship in churches, mosques and other religious places, as well as religious ceremonies shall be performed in the presence of maximum 75 persons and according to the relevant protocols in force for the places of religious worship.
  7. The holding of matches in sports establishments in the context of sports championships is permitted, without spectators, subject to the relevant protocols.
  8. The operation of children’s playgrounds is permitted, with a maximum number of 50 persons in indoor playgrounds and 150 persons in outdoor playgrounds, subject to the social distancing measures in force based on the square metres of each establishment. It is understood that organizing events at playgrounds (e.g. children’s birthday parties) with more than 10 persons – including adults and children – per event is forbidden.
  9. The use of changing rooms in gyms is forbidden.

Category C. Contingency measures for the Districts of Lemesos and Pafos in force as of the 5th until the 16th of November:

Due to the deterioration of the epidemic situation and the increased epidemiological load that continues to be recorded, and taking into consideration the latest data showing that for the period 17-30 of October in the Lemesos District, the cumulative impact is 420 persons per 100.000 and the accumulative impact for the Pafos District is 294 persons per 100.000, thus presenting tripled numbers in relation to the previous fortnight in consideration, the following measures have been decided additionally to the island-wide measures:

  1. All team sports and social activities for children under the age of 18 (e.g. football, dancing, swimming, martial arts, theatre, choir, etc.) are prohibited.
  2. Championship matches for athletes below 18 years of age, based in the Districts of Lemesos and Pafos, are suspended. For example, if a team based in the District of Lemesos or Pafos is playing with a team of the Lefkosia District, the match shall be suspended until the measures are lifted.
  3. The operation of all children’s playgrounds, indoor or outdoor, is suspended.
  4. The operation of gyms is suspended.

Workplace Measures Are Also RECOMMENDED:

In addition, with the main aim of reducing the number of employees and, consequently, limiting their exposure to the virus in the workplace and maximizing the protection of their health, it is recommended to adopt a series of practices, such as the following:

In addition, with the main aim of reducing the number of employees and, consequently, limiting their exposure to the virus in the workplace and maximizing the protection of their health, it is recommended to adopt a series of practices, such as the following:

  1. Teleworking / working from home where possible (for example, circularly in a significant percentage of 30-50% of the total staff, etc.) with priority given to people belonging to vulnerable groups of the population.
  2. Separation and grouping of staff, so that they do not have contact with each other, with different working hours during the day or with circular hours, different workstations or otherwise.
  3. Separate staff / group breaks and avoidance of common areas for breaks.
  4. 4. Remote meetings and teleconferences and limiting, as much as possible, the number and length of stay of outside visitors.

To this end, in consultation between the Ministries of Health and Finance, the Public Administration and Personnel Department is preparing relevant arrangements for the Departments / Services, so that persons who fall into the categories of citizens with risk factors for serious illness from COVID-19 and come in contact with the public or work in an office with more than one person and it is not possible to maintain the appropriate distances, may be able to be in a position to carry out their work in an individual working area. In the event that such an arrangement is not possible, then such persons will be able, with the approval and in full consultation with their Supervisor, to perform remote work, where the nature of the work allows it, alternately and to the extent that will not exceed 50% of the individuals belonging to vulnerable groups, for each Service.

We would also like to highlight that the Ministry of Health has issued a list of Categories of citizens at risk for severe COVID-19 illness. As the article involved medical terms and is at this stage only available in Greek we would advise interested parties to read the original article here.