The Budapest city council has done everything in its power to prevent the novel coronavirus from spreading to the capital’s elderly homes, Gergely Karácsony, the city’s mayor, said. The municipal council has complied with every single protective measure meant to keep elderly homes safe, Karácsony told an online press conference, adding that Budapest had introduced strict protective measures before they had become mandatory. The public health department of the Budapest government office inspected multiple elderly homes in the city on Wednesday and found that apart from shortages of protective gear, everything was in line with regulations, the mayor said. Elderly homes found to be dealing with shortages will be resupplied with protective equipment before the end of the day, he added. Karácsony said the city council will sue news outlets that he said had recently published “absurd and false claims” about the situation in some of the capital’s nursing homes.
In response to a question, he said it was unclear how the virus had spread to a city council-run elderly home, adding, however, that it is suspected to have spread to the home from a hospital. Several homes will be allowing their staff to live in the home and the city council will provide a one-off 100,000 forint (EUR 280) benefit to the social workers “on the frontline” of the epidemic, he said.