Ihor Kuzin: Basic anti-epidemic and preventive norms will continue to apply even if quarantine is canceled
In particular, we are talking about masks, distance keeping and quarantine in certain cities or regions during outbreaks.
Currently, the quarantine caused by COVID-19 is in effect throughout Ukraine until June 30, 2023 (according to the Resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine of 25.04.2023 No. 383).
The Ministry of Health of Ukraine is considering the possibility of cancelling the nationwide quarantine imposed due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, in accordance with WHO recommendations. For this purpose, the legal framework is being audited (in particular, the analysis of provisions in more than 60 laws and 100 regulations that were introduced and adapted to the pandemic). After the audit, the Ministry of Health will publish an official position on the cancelling of quarantine and explain its phasing.
“The basic anti-epidemic and preventive standards will continue to apply even if the nationwide quarantine is cancelled. This includes the mask requirement and distance in public places. Such rules are intended to provide a general understanding and a list of actions for entrepreneurs, business owners, and managers of institutions to take to minimize the risk of outbreak or infection in the workplace or in public places. The vast majority of such norms will be of a recommendatory nature,” emphasized Deputy Minister of Health and Chief State Sanitary Doctor of Ukraine Ihor Kuzin.
COVID-19 has been moved from an emergency to a permanent public health problem, based on WHO recommendations. As a result, COVID-19 will be part of the flu and SARS cases that are registered every year in the fall and winter.
This means that the requirements for registering cases of COVID will be simplified, and the response to it will be the same as for other SARS.
At the level of each region, the so-called “epidemic thresholds” (maximum permissible incidence levels) will be set, after which appropriate anti-epidemic measures will be introduced at the level of regions, cities or communities (closing schools, introducing a mask requirement, etc.).
COVID-19 vaccinations will remain free and accessible. Supplies of vaccines under the international COVAX initiative have been confirmed by the end of 2024.