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Hungary must be able to function while mounting a disciplined defence against the novel coronavirus pandemic, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said in a regular interview with public broadcaster Kossuth Rádió.

The government has a strategy for dealing with a potential surge in coronavirus cases and a need for increased hospital capacities, the prime minister said. Orbán paid a visit to the institution on Friday morning where he was told that the hospital has a sufficient number of ventilators, beds and staff. He added, at the same time, that doctors were aware of the rise in coronavirus patients in need of hospital treatment and the number of people the institutions can admit. Hospitals have around 10,000 beds available to treat coronavirus patients and this can be expanded by 20,000, the prime minister said.
Now that the health-care sector has been equipped to deal with the second wave of the pandemic, Hungary’s defence will be different than it was during the first wave in the spring, Orbán said. Therefore this time the government is not asking people to stay at home, but rather to simply observe social distancing guidelines and hygiene regulations, he said. As regards the second wave of the pandemic, Orbán said the autumn would be “all about defence” and the daily infection rate was likely to exceed 1,000. He urged young people to also be cautious so as to prevent infecting their parents and grandparents.