With the number of new cases daily floating around the 2400 mark again this week, the situation is neither great nor disastrous. As promised, schools, universities and kindergartens reopened Monday for live studies, relieving many parents of an almost impossible burden as they juggled childcare and work, and bringing a sense of optimism that normalcy is on its way back. Restaurant opening hours were also extended this week, with the Interagency Coordination Council cautiously trying to move the country forward again.
On Tuesday October 5, 2800 new cases of coronavirus were confirmed in Georgia, 42 people died, and 1485 patients recovered.
2410 new cases of coronavirus were registered in Georgia Wednesday, 700 cases in Tbilisi, 113 in Adjara, Imereti – 479, Kvemo Kartli – 151, Shida Kartli – 125, Guria – 74, Samegrelo – Zemo Svaneti – 270, Kakheti – 374, Mtskheta-Mtianeti – 49, Samtskhe-Javakheti – 47, Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti – 28.
24 people died and 1516 people recovered in those 24 hours.
On Thursday, 2228 new cases were recorded alongside 1711 recoveries. 28 died overnight, bringing the total Covid deaths in Georgia since February 2020 to 9162. 31,828 tests were conducted between Wednesday and Thursday, putting the test positivity rate at 7%, up from last week’s average of 5.61%.
Thursday’s newly confirmed cases were divided by region as follows: 638 cases were found in Tbilisi, Adjara – 128, Imereti – 469, Kvemo Kartli – 125, Shida Kartli – 100, Guria – 82, Samegrelo – Zemo Svaneti – 241, Kakheti – 324, Mtskheta-Mtianeti – 40, Samtskhe-Javakheti – 52, Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti – 29.
A total of 626,058 cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in Georgia since February 2020, of which 594,669 have recovered and 9162 have died.
1,844.965 Georgia-residents are fully vaccinated, with around 7500 people getting vaccinated daily on average.
Speaking on the low number of vaccinated citizens, Deputy Health Minister Tamar Gabunia said this week,
“We will definitely reach 60%, but this will not be enough to protect us from the next waves.”
She noted that the rate of vaccination decreased in the last week of September, and things need to be sped up again.
“Lottery incentives have been introduced into the program [a daily chance for those vaccinated to win 100-500 GEL], as has active work with family doctors,” she noted. “In fact, work has been going on in this direction for a long time, but it was considered that financial incentives for family doctors would function as an even more active mechanism to intensify their efforts to vaccinate patients.
“It is important to continue to promote vaccination with positive messages. We will definitely achieve 60%, but this will not be enough to protect us from the next waves. Our ambition is higher today; we want to exceed 60%, and this is no easy task,” Gabunia said.
On Thursday, it was announced to the decision of the Coordinating Council, people over the age of 50 can now be vaccinated with a booster shot 6 months after their last dose of vaccine.
Further, vaccination of children aged 12 to 15 will soon begin in Georgia, starting with high-risk groups.
“Taking into account the epidemiological situation in the country, the working hours of food services will be extended by one hour, and they will be able to work until 23:00 instead of 22:00,” said Giorgi Ghibradze, Chief of Operations at the Interagency Coordination Council.
He added that restrictions related to holding concerts and festivals will soon be lifted and it will be possible to hold such events with the audience in attendance, but in accordance with the regulations.
With the education process having worked remotely since September 15, relief came to all when in-person learning resumed in schools, universities and kindergartens across Georgia on October 4, and children’s entertainment centers were allowed to reopen for business.
The education ministry pledged to follow the coronavirus recommendations strictly, but it will be up to the parents of school students whether they wish their children to go back to school or continue learning online, as teachers must be prepared to satisfy both demands.
The Ministry of Health says the state continues to ensure mandatory Covid-19 testing for teachers, and 67% of school teachers in Georgia are said to have been vaccinated so far.