Hungary faces a “dangerous moment” as it sees a steep rise in coronavirus cases and overall deteriorating epidemiological trends, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said on Friday.
Hungary registered 3,093 new Covid-19 cases and 110 deaths on Thursday, Orbán told public broadcaster Kossuth Radio. The average age of those who died on Thursday was 76.5, he said, adding that there were 4,024 people hospitalised with Covid-19, 352 on a ventilator.
“Our fate will be decided by whether the vaccination curve or the infection curve will rise faster,” the prime minister said.
If vaccinations can outpace the rise in cases “then we will save lives” but if they fail to keep up with the third wave of infections “we will lose lives,” Orbán said.
Hungary’s rising coronavirus case numbers show that the country “on the cusp of a third wave of the epidemic”, the chief medical officer said on Thursday.
Epidemiological trends in Hungary have been deteriorating over the last several days, with 2,853 new Covid infections registered on Wednesday, Cecília Müller told a press conference of the operative board responsible for handling the epidemic.
“We’re seeing worsening epidemiological data,” she said, underlining the importance of implementing the government’s vaccination plan.
Müller noted that Hungary has authorised the use of five Covid vaccines. Vaccinations are ongoing with the Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca and Sputnik V jabs, while experts are still examining the Chinese Sinopharm vaccine, she said.
Meanwhile, Müller said the government will again deploy mobile screening buses offering antigen rapid tests to those whose GP had ordered them to take a Covid test. Those who test positive will also tested using a PCR test on the spot, she added.