The President of the cantonal government, the Swiss of Argentine origin, Antonio hodgers, was favorable to restrict public gatherings to no more than five people, but their position was not a majority in the seven-member collegiate that governs Geneva. Being a rotating annual position, Hodgers will hand over the presidency next Saturday to one of his colleagues, but will continue as one of the seven “Councilors” who run the Canton, all elected by the vote of the population. He was recently contaminated by COVID-19, regaining health on October 12, after a strict quarantine.
The Canton of Geneva, mainly urban, where around half a million people live, domiciled in the downtown area, or in neighboring communes, with little agricultural land, put in march a series of measures, before him increase in coronavirus hospitalizations. To prohibition that more than 15 people congregate in squares, parks, walks, and the tourist edges of Lake Geneva, the limit of one hundred people to meet at private eventssuch as weddings, anniversaries, birthdays, commemorations, and funerals. In all cases, preventive measures must be respected, such as the use of masks, the distance of at least 1.5 meters between the participants, and the means for hand hygiene must be available.
In the last week about a thousand people tested positive in the tests carried out in Geneva. The previous proportion that only 10% of the tests were positive doubled to 20%. Between October 5 and 14, hospitalizations increased by 43%. Yesterday there were 76 patients in the Cantonal Hospital, of which seven were in intensive care. However, the virulence of the virus remains the same as before, only 10% of positive tests cause hospitalizations. Some are being announced 300 new cases daily in Geneva, when that figure corresponded to the whole of Switzerland, a few months ago. There are 917 isolated people under observation to determine whether they have been contaminated.
The new restrictions do not cover political meetings, which have no limits for the public that wishes to attend, but always abiding by the general preventive measures listed above, always with Mandatory chinstraps in all private places. Those mask, are completely imposed in concerts, shows, sports competitions, neighborhood parties, open-door festivals, swimming pools, sports training centers, gyms, parades and mobilizations, whose managers must agree with the authorities the terms of their operation . The restrictions extend to the educational world. The cantonal government has just canceled school recreation camps, primary and secondary education, and study trips that involve students sleeping outside their homes.
At the same time, the consumption of alcoholic beverages is prohibited in all public gatheringsexcept for people seated in non-interchangeable seats. The organizers must take the essential data of the participants (name and surname, cell phone and email), and save that information 15 days in case a contaminated person who has attended becomes ill with COVID-19, so that the health services immediately contact those who were in their proximity, to impose quarantines and isolate them, in a way that cut the chain of potential infections. Geneva’s capacity to carry out such monitoring is proving insufficient. Cantonal health officials can keep track of about 50 cases a day, when the demand is three times higher.