The head of the Cyprus Turkish Medical Association, Dr Özlem Gürkut, said on Saturday that an increase in cases of Covid-19 after reopening the country to visitors on July 1 opening was expected.
In a post on her social media account Dr Gürkut said that because there had been no new cases until the country reopened, health and hygiene measures had been relaxed, and many rules were violated.
She said that life had appeared to have returned to normal. This could be a disaster she said, because there could be people infected with Covid-19 and not showing any symptoms. Every infected person at crowded entertainment venues, restaurants, concerts and meetings etc, could potentially infect hundreds of others. It would be difficult to limit transmission by track and tracing, she said.
Dr Gürkut added that it would be very easy to overwhelm the existing capacity of the healthcare system. She pointed to the fact that the pandemic hospital had not yet been built.
She emphasised the need to avoid crowded environments, to keep masks on in areas where close contact with others was unavoidable. She recommended keeping a distance of between 1.5 and 2 metres away from other people.
In conclusion Dr Gürkut said:
“Stay away from crowded environments.
“Always follow the mask-distance-hygiene rules!
“ Our leaders should immediately build the pandemic hospital that was promised.
“Complete the necessary preparations in the health system.
“We expect the number of passengers coming to our country to be restricted or to take safer measures (such as quarantine) until the necessary pandemic preparations are completed.
“(Of course, we also imagine that our leaders apply the mask-distance-hygiene rules as an example to the society) “
“We said although the preparations, which were said to be completed in our hospitals and healthcare system, were sufficient, the capacity could easily be overcome. In such a situation, experiencing a second closure [of the country] would be much more difficult and intolerable”.