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So far, 27 residents have died in an elderly care home in Budapest’s eastern suburbs, the chief medical officer told an online press conference, adding that in a second round of testing another 58 residents and 4 employees proved infected with the novel coronavirus. Cecília Müller said that those infected will be isolated within the facility in Pesti Road. She added that elderly home residents treated in hospital cannot be released before two consecutive samples come back negative. So far, the virus has spread to 20 retirement homes, three of which have a relatively high case count, she said. Only a couple of people are infected in the rest of the homes, Müller said, adding that those residents would be monitored for symptoms. Müller said that homes for the elderly were being inspected nationwide, and health authorities would soon start disinfecting them in cooperation with the army.
Meanwhile, she said the head of the local office of the World Health Organisation (WHO) had recently assessed the status of the epidemic in Hungary and had backed the testing methods employed by the health authorities. Müller cited the head of the office as saying that coronavirus testing in Hungary was widespread enough. Hungary tests 30 people around every confirmed Covid-19 patient compared with the WHO’s recommendation of ten tests, she added.
Speaking at the same press conference, a spokesman for the board coordinating Hungary’s response to the epidemic, said that the time for guest workers on their way from Ukraine, Romania and Serbia to Western Europe has been restricted to a daily four hours at Záhony, Nagylak and Röszke border stations. The workers cannot leave designated transit routes while in Hungary, and the time for them to cross the western border has also been restricted, Róbert Kiss said. The authorities have so far taken action over the violation of curfew rules in 27,497 instances, he said.