Poland’s COVID-19 nationwide quarantine takes effect until January 17

Warsaw, Dec 28 (Agency) A nationwide quarantine over the coronavirus pandemic in Poland enters into force on Monday to remain in effect until January 17, with a de facto curfew expected to be imposed on New Year’s night. Announcing the New Year’s restrictions earlier this month, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki refrained from using the word curfew, specifying that a curfew would require declaring a state of emergency. Polish citizens would not be able to go outside from 7 p.m. on December 31 (18:00 GMT) until 6 a.m. on January 1.

Group gatherings during the holiday season will be limited to five people excluding the hosts. The quarantine includes closures of hotels, ski resorts, movie theaters, gyms, malls and other retailers, except for grocery stores and pharmacies. This past Saturday, the first batch of the coronavirus vaccine by Pfizer arrived in Poland, including 10,000 doses. A total of 300,000 doses are expected to be supplied by the end of December. This is enough to vaccinate 150,000 people.

The Polish vaccination campaign began on Sunday, with the primary vaccination groups including medical workers, law enforcement officers, seniors and other high-risk populations. All others will be able to sign up to get a shot beginning from January 15. The COVID-19 dynamics in Poland went sharply up in November, hitting a record daily increase of 27,875 new cases and 674 new deaths in one day. As of Monday, the Polish authorities reported a cumulative total of over 1.25 million cases, including 27,118 deaths.