Prague, March 18 (CTK) – Only people over 65 are permitted to go to retail food stores, drugstores and pharmacies in the Czech Republic between 10:00-12:00 as of Thursday, the cabinet decided today within the coronavirus measures, PM Andrej Babiš (ANO) has told reporters.
He first mentioned only food stores, but in reaction to a journalist’s remark, he said the government would extend this rule to apply to drugstores and pharmacies as well.
This measure is to protect the elderly for whom the coronavirus infection poses the strongest risk.
“Only pensioners will be shopping in food stores from 10 to 12 as of Thursday,” Babis summarised the government measure.
It naturally does not apply to the shop owners, operators and employees, Babis added.
On Monday, the government recommended that seniors over 70 do not leave their homes.
It also banned the inmates of senior homes and facilities for the disabled and patients with dementia from leaving these facilities’ areas.
Deputy PM and Industry and Trade and Transport Minister Karel Havlicek (for ANO) added that the government recommended that the operators of retail shops disinfect shopping baskets and trolleys after every use. Door handles, handrails and doors should be disinfected at least once in an hour, he added.
Central Crisis Staff haed Roman Prymula explained that the new measure would not ban the elderly from entering shops before and after the two restricted hours, but they should not do so as they would thereby threaten themselves.
At the end of 2018, more than two million people over 65 lived in the Czech Republic, making up 19.6 percent of its 10.6-million population, according to the data in the Statistical Yearbook.