The Polish Ministry of Health announced over the weekend that two additional patients had died due to complications from COVID-19, bringing the official number of deaths in Poland to seven. Among the latest deaths are those of a 43-year-old bus driver from the city of Radom, south of Warsaw, and a 37-year-old woman hospitalized in Poznań. Both were reportedly in poor health and suffering from underlying medical conditions. As of this morning, there are 629 active cases in Poland, mostly in the provinces of Mazowieckie (147) and Łódzkie (106).
Poland has declared a “state of epidemic” in response to the spread of the disease, with the Polish government announcing over the weekend that the fine for breaking quarantine would be raised from PLN 5,000 to PLN 30,000. Due to recent travel or potential exposure, nearly 130,000 people across Poland are in mandatory quarantine. Over 14,000 of those quarantined are located in Pomerania, which currently has 17 active cases of COVID-19.
In more positive news, 12 people are in recovery from COVID-19 with a thirteenth, Patient Zero, returning home from the hospital over the weekend after tests showed he was completely clear of the virus.
Source: Radio Poland, Radio Gdańsk
Celebrities urge others to stay home and self isolate
English actor Idris Elba joined a growing list of celebrities who have announced they were self-quarantining after testing positive for COVID-19 last week.
Elba, who was rumored to be in talks to be the next James Bond, reports that he “feels okay” and “has no symptoms so far.” He announced the diagnosis via his Instagram account, where he also issued a plea for people to “be pragmatic” and stay at home in order to help slow the spread of the disease.
Elba’s advice is being followed by celebrity couple Rita Wilson and husband Tom Hanks, who went into home quarantine in Australia last week after being treated for coronavirus at a hospital in Queensland. After leaving the hospital, Hanks posted a message on Instagram thanking all “the Helpers” and issued a plea to “take care of ourselves and each other,” as “we are all in this together.” His post was accompanied by a picture of a kangaroo plush toy holding an Australian flag as well a shot of the popular Australian snack–Vegemite on toast.
Sources: Daily Mail
New initiatives help out local businesses and medical professionals
An initiative started in Trójmiasto is spreading across Poland with the aim of supporting local businesses by providing medical staff with a free meal.
Launched in Gdynia last week by the restaurant “Muszla”, the #gastropomaga initiative encourages restaurants and restaurant patrons to donate a meal to hospital staff. The popular dining app finebite (created in Gdańsk), has partnered with over 200 restaurants across Poland to give patrons the option of supporting their favorite restaurant by purchasing “Paczki dla Szpitali” or “Parcels for Hospitals.” The meals can easily be ordered via the finebite app, which also offers patrons the option of purchasing meal vouchers and takeaway “support packages” for themselves.
For more information on the #gastropomoga campaign, visit the finebite website at https://finebite.co/pl/stan-wyjatkowy/
A similar fundraising initiative in Warsaw, #posiłekdlalekarza or “Meals for Doctors” already boasts over 10,000 contributors on its campaign page on the popular fundraising platform zrzutka.pl. A series of civic groups, including the Foundation for Open Dialogue (Fundacja Otwarty Dialog), Spontaniczny Sztab Obywatelski (SSO), Stowarzyszenie Niskie Składki (SNS), and Patryk Wachowiec of the Civil Development Forum (FOR), launched the initiative last week.
The campaign works directly with restaurants to reimburse them up to PLN 800 for meals delivered to hospital workers and other healthcare employees; some 20 restaurants across Trójmiasto–including Muszla in Gdynia and Lao Thai in Gdańsk–are currently participating in the initiative.
For the latest information on how to get involved with these or other support campaigns follow us on Twitter at @RadioGdańskNews
Today will be partly cloudy and cool with almost no chance of rain during the day and a light breeze coming in from the northeast. Temperatures will peak around a high of only 3°C, or 37°F with temps dropping below zero again overnight. Tomorrow is set to be a bit warmer and sunnier, with the weather set to warm up as the week progresses.