The Chief Medical Officer will institute an investigation to determine whether the residents of the Pesti út elderly care home received adequate medical care, the Chief Medical Officer announced at the Saturday online press conference of the Operational Group responsible for the containment of the coronavirus epidemic.

Cecília Müller highlighted that, according to the relevant legislation, in institutions providing care for more than two hundred persons a full-time physician must be available eight hours a day. In homes caring for 100 to 200 persons, a physician must be available for six hours a week, while in institutions providing for fewer residents, medical care must be available for four hours a week. This is the minimum, she said, observing that during an epidemic there is a need for increased care and attention.

In the past day, another 56 residents have been diagnosed with the disease; they were taken to the South Pest Central Hospital (Szent László Hospital), the Korányi Institute and the Bajcsyi-Zsilinszky Hospital. The elderly are in a good general state of health, many of them are displaying few symptoms, while others are asymptomatic, and no one needs intensive care or assisted ventilation. Those remaining in the home have been isolated within the institution, she said.

Ms. Müller also said she had ordered full disinfection at the Pesti út elderly care home with the involvement of units of the defence forces.

She said in the home the first confirmed case was a worker, but at this stage we cannot rule out that the virus appeared in the institution some other way, via the transmission of another person before the introduction of the lockdown measure.

She recalled that there had been problems with medical care, and this, too, could have contributed to the emergence of mass incidences. She added that they would check whether the operator metropolitan municipality was implementing the immediate measures.

She further indicated that in care institutions, including the Pesti út elderly care home, the knowledge and skills of staff members must be refreshed.

In answer to a question, Ms. Müller said the speed and spread of the epidemic had accelerated in the past few days, and more cases would have been registered even in the absence of those infected in the elderly care home. She asked everyone to observe the relevant regulations.

In the context of the Easter holidays, she said everyone should try to avoid overeating as a way of handling the stress caused by the situation and the sense of isolation.

She suggested that we have heavier meals in the morning, and even at this time, we should not forget about rituals, we should devote time to them. We should continue to keep in touch with family members and friends living away from us by telephone and other online means, she recommended.