News Local Covid-19 tests for 20,000 employees due back to work

Covid-19 tests for 20,000 employees due back to work

Another 20,000 employees working for businesses that will reopen in the near future as part of the gradual easing of the lockdown will be tested for coronavirus, the Health Ministry said on Wednesday.

The decision was taken by cabinet which approved a proposal submitted by Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou at the recommendation of the epidemiological team.

It comes within the framework of ongoing efforts to boost checks among the population.

As part of the same drive, 20,000 employees in the public and private sector, the National Guard, Fire Service and Police are being tested as are 2000 employees at small and medium sized food and drink retail businesses and care homes. A randomly selected sample of 800 people has also been tested.

The new programme will cover employees in businesses that will reopen under stage one of the easing of the lockdown.

Cabinet has approved the lockout exit plan and President Nicos Anastasiades is due to announce the decisions at 8.30 pm tonight.

The starting date is widely expected to be May 4.

The ministry said that more details on the businesses and  the procedure to be followed will be announced in the next few days.

The Council of Ministers also approved the supply of free masks to retail businesses which have direct contact with the public to cover part of their needs.

This follows a decision by the Health Ministry making it compulsory for employees in these businesses to wear masks.

Masks will also be distributed to departments of the public and wider public sector that serve the public.

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