The government confirmed the restrictions for Ida-Viru County that were approved yesterday

Stenbock House, 4 December 2020 – At an e-sitting, the government approved an order on restrictions on indoor hobby education, hobby activities, and amateur sport in Ida-Viru County. The new requirements will enter into force on Saturday, 5 December. The restrictions are necessary as the spread of the coronavirus is the widest in Ida-Viru County compared to other counties.

The restrictions apply to indoor hobby activities and hobby education, sports and training, and sports and exercise events.

In all these areas, only individual studies and activities, including individual activities with a supervisor, are allowed as of Saturday. Masks must be worn unless this is not possible for health or other important reasons. Children under the age of 12 are also not required to wear a mask.

Studies and activities must follow the usual rules for preventing the spread of the virus, such as the availability of disinfectants, the cleaning of common areas, the ventilation of rooms, and other instructions issued by the Health Board. The 2 + 2 rule must also be followed, except in the case of families or where it is not reasonably possible to do so.

The individual restriction does not apply to members of the same family and the activities of people with special needs.

Additionally, the established restrictions do not apply to professional and semi-professional sports taking place in the competitive system of sports governing bodies, including in the case of youth sports to those athletes and teams participating in the Estonian championships organised by sports governing bodies.

The restrictions are not extended to physical education lessons in primary, basic education, and upper secondary schools and to activities related to the country’s military defence and internal security, such as sports activities for conscripts on the territory of the Defence Forces.

The Government Communication Unit will publish the order and the explanatory memorandum on the website

As at 3 December, the spread of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, which causes the COVID-19 disease, is most extensive in Estonia in Ida-Viru County. The infection rate per 100,000 inhabitants in the last 14 days is 834 in Ida-Viru County, which is more than twice as high as that of Harju County, which has the next highest prevalence of infection (400). As at yesterday, a total of 1,166 COVID-19 cases have been registered in the Eastern Region Department of the Health Board in the last 14 days. As at 3 December, there are 68 COVID-19 patients in treatment at Ida-Viru Central Hospital, compared to 43 patients at West Tallinn Central Hospital and 31 patients at Tartu University Hospital.

As at 30 November, bed occupancy was critically high in three hospitals – Ida-Viru Central Hospital, West Tallinn Central Hospital, and Narva Hospital. As at 1 December, the occupancy rate of general hospital rooms for COVID-19 patients in Ida-Viru Central Hospital is 91 per cent and scheduled surgical treatment has been limited to 70 per cent. The occupancy rate of general hospital rooms for COVID-19 patients at Narva Hospital is 62 per cent. Scheduled treatment is closed, except for outpatient reception. The number of patients over the age of 60 is also constantly growing. The average age of hospitalised people is 68.5 years, and the share of people aged 60 and older in hospitals is 73.3 per cent. In Ida-Viru County, there has also been an increase in the number of people infected from the nursing home foci.

The continuity of the region’s health care system is also threatened by the fact that in Narva Hospital, nearly 100 employees have been issued a certificate of incapacity for work, 39 of whom have been diagnosed with COVID-19. In addition, the average length of hospital stay has increased due to patients with more serious conditions.