Announcement: Retail stores to reopen, Travel for exercise allowed at weekends, Vaccinations for 65-69 year olds

Text of announcement from the Ministry of Civil Protection, March 31st:

Ministers Hardalias and Kikilias made an announcement yesterday, 31st March, in which they stressed the need for continued caution but laid out plans to allow citizens some more freedoms.

They emphasised that the country is still struggling with a 3rd wave of COVID infections. The general hospital of Thriasio will become a COVID only hospital, and 51 new COVID-ICU units have been created, over various regions.

There have been 1,691,000 vaccinations given (1,088,000 1st dose / 602,000 2nd dose) in 1042 vaccination centres across the country. From April 2nd the vaccination platform opens for the age group of 65 – 69 year olds. See this post for details of how to register.

The government is aiming to give 1,500,000 more vaccinations in April, more again in May and in June.

The ministers also announced that retail stores will open again from April 5th, with a special SMS code and a time limit of 3 hours. The operation will be via Click Away and in-store appointments, with limited numbers.

Additionally, from Saturday 3rd April – and applying only at weekends – we can again use cars to travel to a place for outdoors exercise. This allows for travel outside of your municipality, for SMS code #6, for up to 3 people (or one family living together), only on Saturdays and Sundays. They stressed that this comes with a clear recommendation to avoid crowds, and with mandatory use of a mask.

Regarding schools, this will be evaluated next week with the prospect of starting some classes on April 12 and using the self-diagnostic home test. The operation of department stores and shopping malls will also be re-evaluated at this point.