Watch: More coronavirus measures to be lifted on 5 June

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

Prime Minister Robert Abela announced that rest restrictive coronavirus measures will be lifted on 5 June, during a press conference on Monday evening. The lifting of measures will be based on the keeping of three principles – social distancing, wearing of masks, and hand hygiene, Abela elaborated.

Flanked by Deputy Prime Minister and Health Minister Chris Fearne and Superintendent of Public Health Prof. Charmaine Gauci.

Abela confirmed that the target date for reopening the Malta International Airport is 1 July. Flights will be available to and from 19 countries. He remarked that traveling will be subjected to “simple protocols” which would not people off from going abroad.

Only some establishments will remain closed, these include contact sports.

“Work gives us dignity. Everyone back to work including the vulnerable”

“Work gives us dignity,” Prime Minister Abela said on Monday. He added that as from Friday everyone will go back to work including those people deemed vulnerable.

“We won the war” – Fearne

Deputy Prime Minister Chris Fearne explained that the government had been preparing for the coronavirus outbreak in Malta since January. The authorities had prepared the necessary standard operating procedures and started training the staff. The authorities started stocking on protective personal equipment for the front liners. Other preparations included preparing bed space, stocking on ventilators, and other equipment necessary.

“The preparations are there in case of another outbreak. These three months have tested our system. Our health care system is ready to face an epidemic,” Fearne said.

The Deputy Prime Minister said that the war against coronavirus “was won”. He highlighted that the rate of transmission went down to 0.5.

The healthcare system is prepared for another coronavirus epidemic and any other epidemic. Fearne explained that an early warning system was in place to detect the possibility of another epidemic.

Social distancing, hygiene and use of masks remain important, Fearne underlined.

Fearne thanked all front liners who worked during the pandemic.

We have a duty to safeguard the public’s health – Prof. Charmaine Gauci

The Superintendent of Public Health Prof. Charmaine Gauci remarked that after analysing the situation abroad, Malta prepared as best it could for the situation.

The decrease in cases and drop in the rate of transmission is thanks to the work we have all done together, Prof. Gauci explained.

Swab tests will be strengthened in order to ensure that the situation is kept under control.

Childcare centres will reopen but subject to new guidelines, Prof. Gauci announced.

‘We also have other situations where some events can be held subject to certain restrictions,’ Prof. Gauci said, highlighting that social distancing remains paramount.

19 destinations

Travel will be allowed to and from 16 countries and two Italian islands. These are: Iceland, Slovakia, Cyprus, Lithuania, Israel, Norway, Switzerland, Estonia, Denmark, Hungary, Austria, Luxembourg, Germany, Czech Republic, Finland and Ireland; as well as Sardinia and Sicily. The opening of safe travel corridors will apply to direct flights and people living in these countries and islands and who have been residing in these countries or islands for at least four weeks.

There will be no mandatory quarantine imposed on individuals who come or go to any of these countries.

Superintendent of Public Health Prof. Gauci explained that travel will be allowed to countries which have a similar situation to Malta or even better. She added that they took into consideration the amount of swab tests being carried out daily.

There will be passenger locators forms in place in order to trace and monitor the passengers in the eventuality that a new coronavirus case is detected from a flight.

Mass to resume in mid-June

The churches were never closed, Dr Fearne explained. On Mass, Dr Fearne said that these would resume in mid-June, however, the Church authorities will announce further details on this. He mentioned that mass will be subject to a number of protocols once they resume.

Migrants held offshore

Asked whether that the asylum seekers being held on board the four boats chartered by the Government, Abela said “I hope that by that date we would have reached the agreement we would like to see.”

“We’re still in a public health emergency. I urge for European solidarity on the issue,” Abela said.

Medical bulletin postponed

This afternoon’s press briefing with Superintendent of Public Health, Prof. Charmaine Gauci was cancelled a few minutes prior to its start because of an urgent meeting with the Prime Minister himself. It was said that she would address tonight’s press briefing with Abela.

The press call didn’t mention any other names of persons addressing the press briefing except that of the Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister is expected to announce more details about the yesterday’s revelations that include the re-opening of local businesses, gyms as well as the Court starting from Friday.

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