(QCOSTARICA) Friday was the day for the most cases recorded in a single day, a 24 hour period from Thursday noon to Friday noon, confirmed the Minister of Health, Daniel Salas. The record prior was on June 10, with 86 cases.
It was also 24 hours after the Minister announced the move to phase 3 of the reopening, in fact taking effect one day earlier, on June 20, to reopen malls, retail stores and restaurants on weekends, and churches.
However, all that got suspended and the return of the vehicular restrictions to the same on Semana Santa for the weekend. For now, the restrictions will return the new normal on Monday, but it will all depend on the numbers in the coming days.
What is more worrisome for health authorities is the rise in hospitalizations, a record of 29 patients, of whom 5 are in intensive care.
Dr. Roman Macaya, president of the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social, explained what could happen quickly happen if the number of cases grows exponentially, in short, would collapse the health system in as little as a couple of weeks.
This week there was an increase of 4 people in hospital, a number can easily double in as many days, that can double again in less than a week, doubling 2 more times very quickly and with that an increase in ICU patients and the collapse of the country’s health system.
To get ahead, the Ministry of Health suspended for the weekend all sanitary permits to would have been the next to last phase to total reopening. Circulation of vehicles this weekend is limited to local shopping, ie supermarket, grocery store, pulperia (corner store), pharmacy, a medical appointment at a doctor or clinic.
From 10 am to 5 pm Saturday, only vehicles with odd-numbered ending plates (1,3,5,7,9) can circulate; on Sunday even-numbered (0,2,4,6,8) can circulate from 5 am to 5 pm. The fine for violation is ¢110,000 colones, 6 points on the driver’s license (means it the driver will have to attend driver ed classes on renewal), and confiscation of license plate and/or vehicle.
Public transport, ie buses and taxis, will operate.
The vehicular restrictions will return on Monday from 5 am to 10 pm, with plates ending in 1 & 2 restricted, 3 & 4 on Tuesday, 5 & 6 on Wednesday, 7 & 8 on Thursday and 9 & 0 on Friday.
Please stay at home, stay safe, stay healthy. If we want to get back to some form of normalcy in our lives, get back to work, we need to work together in this battle against the virus.