With the resurgence of Covid-19 cases in recent weeks, the Lisbon region has been forced to take a step back in the deconfinement process. The metropolitan area of the capital is again isolated from the rest of the country this weekend.
To enter or exit, you will need to have a negative test (72 hours before PCR or antigen within 48 hours) for the new coronavirus.
The so-called European digital certificate is also accepted, which proves a complete vaccination or Covid-19 recovery for less than six months.
The measure is valid between 3:00 p.m. on Friday and 6:00 a.m. on Monday.
Children 12 and under are excluded from these requirements.
The aim is to try to contain the spread of the Delta variant, identified for the first time in India, which already accounts for more than 60% of infections in the Lisbon region.
The measure was announced, along with the return of other restrictions, this Thursday afternoon (24), after a meeting of the Council of Ministers.
For two consecutive weeks, Lisbon exceeded the maximum number of cases set by the government – 240 infections per 100,000 inhabitants – and was forced to back down.
The biggest difference is in the hours of operation of commercial establishments. Restaurants and cafes must close until 3:30 p.m. on weekends.
The maximum number of people per table has again been reduced. In confined spaces, only groups of up to four people are allowed and, outdoors, up to 6.
The gymnasiums are still active, but they can no longer have group lessons.
Besides Lisbon, Sesimbra and Albufeira are also set back in the confusion.
In the rest of the country, the atmosphere is also a warning. Due to the increase in Covid-19 cases, the country has decided to halt the progress of the reopening process.
Experts have linked the increase in infections with a higher prevalence of the Delta variant, which is much more transmissible. Portugal is one of the European countries with the highest prevalence of this strain.
This week, German Chancellor Angela Merkel publicly criticized the Portuguese government for opening the door, without restrictions, to British tourists. The UK was the first European region with a high prevalence of the delta variant.
“We have a situation in Portugal that maybe could have been avoided, and that is why we have to work even harder,” he said.
The decision to host the last Champions League match and more than 12,000 English tourists in Porto at the end of May has been widely criticized at home and abroad.
In an attempt to contain infections, Portugal is now trying to speed up vaccination and testing of the population.
Covid-19 mobile test units roam the streets of Lisbon | Photo credit: Giuliana Miranda / Folhapress
In the city of Lisbon, it is already possible to do free and unlimited tests in pharmacies. There are also mobile tracking points that circulate in the busy points of the capital.
So far, 48.6% of the population has received a dose of the vaccine and 27.3% already have a full vaccination.