Slovakia screens 2 million people in second round of mass Covid tests

Covid Test

More than 2 million people took part in Slovakia’s second round of nationwide coronavirus testing, according to the government, which aimed to screen most of the 5.5 million residents in an effort to curb infections in the Central European nation.

Only 0.66 per cent of the more than 2 million who were given rapid antigen tests on Saturday and Sunday came back with a positive result, said Defence Minister Jaroslav Nad, who oversaw the operation.

Slovakia appeared to meet its goal of testing a huge swathe of its population of those over the age of 10 in the course of two weekends.

Those who had previously been infected and recovered did not have to take a test, nor did those 65 years or older, because they were already meant to be staying at home.

Some 3.6 million people underwent the procedure the previous weekend, with 1 per cent positive.

Districts with a particularly low percentage of infected people did not have to participate in the second round.
Participation in the tests was voluntary. However, those who do not have a negative test result are supposed to be subject to a strict curfew starting on Monday and are not even allowed to go to work.

Negative coronavirus test are required for entry from abroad. But rapid tests at border crossings are not expected to be available before November 15, meaning until then, travellers must bring their own proof.

Slovakia weathered the pandemic better than many European countries in the spring but has seen the situation worsen with the onset of autumn.

The country has registered a total of 76,072 coronavirus cases and 366 deaths since the start of outbreak, according to government data.

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