As Monaco announced the fourth consecutive day with no new Covid-19 reported cases, Didier Gamerdinger, minister for social affairs and health, addressed the issue of masks, screening tests and digital tracing in Monaco.
From tomorrow, Monaco residents over 65 will receive two free washable and reusable masks for one month, free of charge, from the town council, who are already in charge of the home meal scheme.
All other Monaco residents will soon receive by post the same masks, which have been made in Monaco: 800 masks a day manufactured by Banana Moon and 80,000 masks from Bettina produced at a rate of 1,000 (soon to be 2,000) per day. Another order for 120,000 masks has been made to two Italian companies.
Concerning whether it will be mandatory to use the mask or if there will be a fine for not wearing it, the communications department told Forbes Monaco, “For the moment we are not talking about that.”
For employees, companies will be able to purchase disposable surgical masks at cost from the government. These single-use masks, €2.50 for a surgical mask and €7.50 for a FPP2 mask, will also be sold in pharmacies and authorized stores.
In terms of testing, the minister confirmed that every day between 10 to 50 people are being checked with a rhino-pharyngeal swab (PCR).
For blood tests, the country’s health authorities are verifying the conformity of the first 1,000 serological tests, with 30,000 more en route from Germany and another 30,000 ordered from China.
Once the tests are confirmed reliable, they will be used on a large scale in the coming weeks on the resident population and employees, whether symptomatic of coronavirus or not.
The use of digital tracing via mobile phones is being considered for epidemiological investigations, and Monaco is following the systems underway in Singapore, Germany and France.
The minister clarified that digital tracing via mobile phones in Monaco would only be put in place if the individual volunteered to use the limited connectivity of Bluetooth. The Personal Information Control Commission (CCIN) is already on board with the integration of this plan.
There is a video tutorial explaining the use and maintenance of the mask on www.covid19.mc.