COVID-19 infection is attacking with greater force than ever before. We have a big problem, and if we don’t pay attention, it will become even bigger. For days, we have been first on the global list of number of deaths/population, the majority of hospital departments have become COVID-departments, ICUs are extremely overloaded, operating rooms are shut down because their ventillators are also in use in the fight for COVID-patients’ lives. There are no more mobile health workers, hospitals are looking for volunteers to help out.
Defeating the virus, opening the country, preventing the fourth wave depends on how successful and effective our vaccination program is. We are doing great in this respect, but the number of hospitalized people during the third wave, the number of deaths depends on restrictions and the population’s discipline and will to follow rules. The vaccination program must continue, and at the same time, we must strengthen personal defense, keeping physical distances, keeping personal contacts to a minimum.
The situation is extremely grave, so the Hungarian Medical Association asks everyone to only leave their home when absolutely necessary.
We ask people to
- Plan ahead for their grocery shopping, if possible, only go to the stores once a week,
- Avoid using gardening stores as a replacement for malls where we can socialize,
- Avoid public transportation whenever possible,
- Refrain from visiting loved ones, meeting up with friends, at the moment this is the best way to keep them safe,
- Avoid popular parks, lakes, forest areas during the weekend,
- Postpone travels (even if only within Hungary) if possible,
- Skip Easter festivities this year to make sure we can have them next year.
Minimizing personal contact, keeping physical distances, correct mask usage and washing hands is a personal responsibility at the moment which can save lives.
We realize this comes with making a lot of sacrifices, everyone wishes to have a free life without restrictions, but let’s not devalue everything we’ve done until now by loosening restrictions too early. Today it is up to you whether ICUs will be under such strain that it will become impossible to provide intensive care safely, or not.
We ask decision makers to
- Immediately restrict the number of people allowed inside stores at the same time,
- Ban meetings of more than 3 people in public areas, unless they live in the same household,
- Shut down all malls, shopping centers, and allow only for pharmacies and grocery stores to remain open within these centers.
Leadership of the Hungarian Medical Association