Unvaccinated Greeks will need a negative COVID test to access services – Metro US

Unvaccinated Greeks will need a negative COVID test to access services

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic in Athens
Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic in Athens

ATHENS (Reuters) – Unvaccinated Greeks will need to show a negative COVID-19 test to access state services, banks, restaurants and retail shops as cases hit a new daily record on Tuesday, health authorities said.

Greece reported 6,700 new coronavirus infections in the preceding 24 hours on Tuesday, breaking a previous single-day record of 5,449 that was recorded on Monday.

This took the total infections to 754,451 since the pandemic broke out last year. Some 16,050 people have died of the COVID-19 disease so far in Greece.

With the pandemic worsening and temperature falling, more measures are necessary to protect unvaccinated people, Health Minister Thanos Plevris said in a televised statement.

All unvaccinated workers should also test negative twice a week, Plevris said, adding that the new measures will take effect on Nov. 6. Most unvaccinated in Greece are now required to present a negative test once a week to get to their workplace.

About 60.5% of a population of about 11 million are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, less than the European Union average of 64.7%, according to the latest data.

Plevris said that Greece will soon send letters and text messages on mobile phones as part of a new campaign to boost vaccinations.

(Reporting by Angeliki Koutantou; Editing by Andrew Cawthorne and Marguerita Choy)