Greece confirms its first case of coronavirus

People wearing protective face masks sit outside the AHEPA hospital, where the first confirmed coronavirus case is being treated, in Thessaloniki. (Reuters)

Greece on Wednesday reported its first coronavirus case in a woman who had recently traveled to northern Italy.

A health ministry spokesman said the 38-year-old woman was in a Thessaloniki hospital and in good condition.

The announcement comes as the COVID-19 virus continues to surge in Italy, making it the hardest-hit country in Europe.

The Greek government on Tuesday said a shutdown of some public areas and travel restrictions would be activated in case of a mass outbreak.

The measures, contained in a government decree, include temporary travel bans to and from countries with a large number of infections and enable beds to be requisitioned in hotels and private clinics.

The decree also foresees the temporary closure of “indoor public gathering areas” such as schools, places of worship, cinemas, theatres, sports halls, and businesses.

“We are ready to do whatever is necessary to protect public health,” government spokesman Stelios Petsas told reporters.

Greece’s health ministry has earmarked 13 hospitals nationwide to handle virus cases.

A health ministry spokesman earlier this week noted that owing to the virus’ long gestation period, health checks at ports and airports had only minor chances of success.

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Last Update: 13:22 KSA 16:22 - GMT 13:22
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