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On Thursday, the number of new daily coronavirus infections in Poland reached a record high. According to the Ministry of Health, 1967 people tested positive and 30 have died. 

The total number of officially confirmed cases of infection is currently at 93 381. Meanwhile, 2543 people have died.

Nearly 2560 patients with confirmed COVID-19 were hospitalized. 159 of them are on ventilators.

Since Wednesday, 706 people have recovered, adding to the current total of 70401.

Over 29600 tests have been carried out in the past 24 hours.

A record number of new infections

The infection rate began to rise sharply in the past two weeks. On September 19, the number of new daily cases exceeded 1000. It then gradually increased breaking new daily records.

Up until now, the highest number of new coronavirus cases has been reported last Friday- 1587. This week, there were 1326 new cases on Tuesday, and 1552 on Wednesday.

The result has been a dramatic decrease in the availability of beds in hospitals and infectious disease wards. There are also more patients in need of mechanical ventilation.

A new strategy

- We’re currently observing a dynamic increase in new coronavirus cases. It’s the result of going back to a relatively normal dynamic of social life, returning to offices and schools. An increased number of social interactions helps the virus to spread – the Minister of Health, Adam Niedzielski, said on Tuesday.

Asked about the government’s plans to contain the outbreak, Niedzielski said that his Ministry is about to “modify its strategy”. He announced, for instance, that there will be more hospital beds for infected patients, more beds with ventilators, and mentioned a generally new approach to COVID-19 patients.

From now on, after a patient tests positive, he/she is to return to a family doctor or a first-level hospital. Patients who are asymptomatic or show only very mild symptoms will be allowed to self-isolate at home. If the symptoms are visible, the doctor will decide whether to refer the patient to an infectious disease hospital or a third level hospital. 

- Doctors will decide whether a given patient should be diagnosed only by means of a phone interview or whether the condition and situation require an in-person visit and thus also a physical examination - said the Minister.

Niedzielski also announced tougher restrictions. In “green zones” the number of wedding guests will be reduced from 150 to 100. In “yellow zones” - from 100 to 70. In “red zones”, the maximum number of people on the wedding guest list can’t exceed 50.

As for other restrictions, restaurants, bars, and other gastronomic points in “red zones” will have to close their doors at 10:00 pm.

People living in “yellow zones” will now have to wear facial protection even when going outside. (previously, it was a measure introduced only in “red zones”).

Regional changes

The decision to introduce a regional color-coded system is based on specific data regarding local infection rates. If the number of newly reported cases per 10.000 citizens exceeded 12 over the past two weeks, the region becomes a “red zone”. If the number of new cases in a given region is somewhere between 6 and 12, it becomes “yellow”.

This Saturday (October 3), the list of „yellow” and „red zones” will be expanded to include additional cities and districts. 16 new districts will be classified as “red”, including such popular holiday destinations as Zakopane and Sopot. 28 districts will be classified as “yellow”, among them Gdańsk, Gdynia, Rzeszów, Kielce, and Szczecin.

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Every day, 400 journalists at Gazeta Wyborcza write verified, fact-checked stories about the coronavirus pandemic for you.

They are on the front lines in 25 Polish cities. They work on the ground, reporting from hospitals and airports.

We have decided to open online access to our news stories and special guides focused on the issue of public health, for free.

The access to information should be equal for all.

Gazeta Wyborcza Foundation
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