In the middle of a strong second wave of the pandemic, the game must go on
Even though the government has been trying to stress for some time that they have prepared for the second wave of the pandemic, daily figures released in recent days appear to contradict this. While the number of infected people and new deaths are constantly growing, the number of tests and data regarding those who have recovered is now stagnating or even decreasing. Meanwhile, the government handles football matches with particular care – after all, it’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s favorite sport.
by Szilvia Zsilák, Krisztián Szabó, Gabriella Horn (Atlatszo.hu)
The second wave of the coronavirus epidemic took hold in Hungary at the beginning of September, when the number of new infections began to increase by hundreds every day. A thousand people died within three weeks because of COVID-19 in October 2020 in Hungary. The official data for infected patients is around 60 thousand, but some experts believe, based on the high number of positive results in all tests, that in reality there may be as many as ten times more cases in the country.
Hungary seemed to be one of the few countries which successfully handled the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. Perhaps this contributed to a sense of over-confidence in the government: the summer came and went without any significant preparatory measures for the second wave. Until the end of October, only a few restrictions were introduced, despite the soaring figures of new infections and deaths. Football stadiums were still open to thousands of supporters on a regular basis. All the while, experts feared that the government’s determination to keep the economy going at all costs may result in tragedy and a collapse of the whole healthcare system in a few weeks.
Photo credit: MTI/Szilárd Koszticsák