Tuesday news summary

Three million respirators for people in need

The state will provide three million respirators for free to people in need and children homes. The proposal of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs was approved by the government today, said Minister Jana Maláčová (ČSSD) on Twitter. People can also apply for an extraordinary benefit for the acquisition of protective equipment, namely 500 crowns per person per month.

Serious cases of Covid-19 on record high

The number of serious cases of Covid-19 in the Czech Republic reached a new record on Monday, getting to 1,568 seriously ill people. There were 12,150 more confirmed cases in the country yesterday, which is about 750 more than a week ago. Compared to the previous Monday, the share of positive tests has also increased from 31.2 percent to 33.4 percent.

Mandatory testing in companies

The government has approved mandatory testing in companies. Businesses with more than 250 employees will have to start testing on Wednesday and have to test all people by the 12th of March. Businesses with 50 to 249 people will start testing on Friday, and all employees will need to have the tests ready by the 15th of March. The government has now set longer deadlines, otherwise it will require testing once a week. Employees working from home will not have to undergo testing.

Prymula is the new president's advisor

Epidemiologist and former Minister of Health Roman Prymula became an adviser to President Miloš Zeman. His name has already appeared on the official list. CNN Prima News pointed this out today, according to which Prymula will be an unpaid advisor without a contract. Zeman has repeated several times in the past that he considers Prymula an expert, last October he was awarded the Order of the White Lion for managing the first wave of the coronavirus epidemic.

In the middle of February, Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (ANO), of whom Prymula was also an adviser, ended his cooperation with him. Babiš reacted to the fact that Prymula attended the football match of Prague's Slavia as a spectator during the time of strong restrictions against coronavirus. Prymula rejected the criticism.