Greece’s first confirmed COVID-19 case, a 38-year-old woman admitted to a special ward at AHEPA hospital in Thessaloniki, was reported to be in relatively good condition on Wednesday.
“We must keep calm,” said the health ministry’s spokesperson Dimitris Tsiodras, an infectious diseases specialist, at a press briefing on Wednesday.
“The patient is a Greek woman aged 38 who had travelled to northern Italy. She is well and is being treated by a group of excellent doctors in Thessaloniki, while an effort is now underway to track down those that she came into contact with and those that were in close contact will be voluntarily isolated and their health will be monitored,” Tsiodras said.
He said that the disease is still relatively mild in the majority of cases and stressed that everyone must follow the rules of hygiene concerning regular hand washing and how to behave when coughing.
Tsiodras explained that those arriving from the stricken areas of northern Italy should monitor their health condition over the coming days and, if they develop symptoms, should stay home and inform their doctor or the National Public Health Organisation so that the necessary action can be taken.
Meanwhile, regular leaves of absence for all health and hospital services are suspended by order of Health Minister Vassilis Kikilias as of Wednesday.
Also, all staff at emergency ambulance EKAV, regional clinics and health centers and all local health-related facilities are suspended as of the same day.