Woman at Greek camp tests positive for coronavirus after giving birth

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Greece’s migration ministry on Tuesday said an asylum-seeker from a camp near Athens had tested positive for the coronavirus after giving birth at an Athens hospital.

The unidentified woman lives at Ritsona, a camp some 80 km (50 miles) north of Athens.

This is the first case among asylum-seekers living in a Greek camp. The state has run several vaccination campaigns in past years, but no screening has been done for the present virus.

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It was not immediately clear if the woman had been infected inside the maternity hospital.

State TV ERT said the woman is of African origin.

The ministry said another person living with the new mother had tested negative for the virus.

“The public health organization is already tracking the contacts of this case in recent days, and taking all necessary measures to protect (camp) residents and staff,” the migration ministry said.

Ten medical staff at the hospital have been quarantined and three other people in the same room as the woman are being tested, a hospital source said.

There have been 46 recorded deaths and 1,212 cases of COVID-19 in Greece, which has a population of 11 million.

In the camps, where tens of thousands of asylum seekers live in overcrowded and unhygienic conditions, regulations have been announced to keep residents as far from the local population as possible.

The movement of camp residents has been drastically reduced for the next 30 days, with access to nearby communities only allowed to small groups under police supervision between 7:00 am and 7:00 pm.

Specialized medical teams have being deployed to the camps and virus isolation areas and inspection points are being set up.

Camp access to outside visitors is also barred, though aid and rights group representatives are still allowed to enter.

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