COVID-19 in Bulgaria Overview: The “Green Certificate” Period for Post-Illness has been Extended

Society » HEALTH | October 21, 2021, Thursday // 21:15
Bulgaria: COVID-19 in Bulgaria Overview: The “Green Certificate” Period for Post-Illness has been Extended investor.bg

Tensions in front of the malls and fictitious inspections on the first day of the introduction of the "green certificates".

Health authorities changed the rules on the day they took effect, and Prime Minister Stefan Yanev acknowledged that they were late in introducing them.

The new thing from today - the term of the certificates of the patientswho had the disease changes from 6 months to one year. However, extended certificates will only be valid at national level, but not in other countries.

Restaurants and malls will receive a grace period of several days in which to be able to introduce the new requirements.

"The extension of the certificate for post-covid patients up to 12 months is a unanimous opinion of three expert councils on immunology, infectious diseases and epidemiology," said Borislav Sotirov.

"The certificate of post-illness will be considered valid for up to one year, within our country. This period cannot be extended - to be used for travel to the European Union, where European rules apply. There is no need to re-issue certificates," added the Minister of Health Dr. Stoycho Katsarov.

Research to date has shown that immune cells and antibodies persist for up to 1 year after illness.

"More people that already had covid, as opposed to vaccinated, tend to maintain the antibody and cellular immune response for a longer period of time," added Prof. Mariana Murdzheva of the Expert Council on Clinical Immunology.

There are still no systematic studies on how long the immune response lasts in vaccinated people, but scientists expect their certification to be extended soon.

By Monday, the registration information system will be reconfigured and registered patients with a rapid antigen test will also be able to receive certificates. But they will also apply only to Bulgaria. A one-month, valid certificate will also be issued after the first dose, so that people can choose a vaccine without administrative coercion due to the measures introduced.

"Obviously, the government's measures have led to the preference for Jansen, which is a one-time vaccine. There is great interest and I am happy about that," commented Dr. Vasil Mihailov.

"When the first dose of, say, a two-dose vaccine is given, data is generated in the national system. It can issue a document from there, which is completely protected as after the second with a QR code, but it will say the first of two" he explained. Dr. Alexander Zlatanov.

No one has been returned from the vaccination point of Alexandrovska Hospital so far. Cases of contraindications are extremely rare and they are usually associated with some kind of immune deficiency.

"These are most often cases related to cancer and in certain stages of the disease," said Dr. Vasil Mihailov.

Restaurants and retail outlets will have a four-day grace period to adapt to the new requirements.

"When violations are found, when something is wrong, only prescriptions will be issued, the prescription is also an administrative act," said Deputy Health Minister Dr. Alexander Zlatanov.

Employees of non-certified sites will receive free antigen tests to be able to continue working. They will only pay for the taking and processing of the sample.

"To make it easier for people to get involved in the process of breaking the epidemic chain," added Dr. Stoycho Katsarov.

However, Prime Minister Stefan Yanev acknowledged that announcing the new measures at the last minute was a mistake.

"I understand the inconvenience of all people regarding their work commitments and their parental ones, but I repeat - we tried all the time to assess the situation and to take these measures at the latest stage," said caretaker Prime Minister Stefan Yanev.

But closing schools, according to the health minister, is a very justified measure. If the epidemic changes, they will be the first to open.

"Currently, this is an anti-epidemic measure, which we hope will work best," added Dr. Atanas Katsarov.

If the number of patients continues to grow despite the measures and the hospitals fail to take more patients, the European Commission has provided an opportunity to activate the so-called civil protection mechanism.

"The mechanism includes assisting the member states with medicines, transport and treatment of patients, especially intensive care patients, in countries close to us with sanitary aviation," said Dr. Toma Tomov, Deputy Minister of Health.

This mechanism has already been activated between Italy and Germany, between France and Belgium, patients from Italy have also been transported to Germany. But our country is still far from this option.

/BNT

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Tags: green certificate, covid, vaccinated, Bulgaria
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