Croatia reported two new cases of coronavirus infection on Tuesday, raising the country’s number of cases to 15.
Health authorities confirmed both of the latest cases were individuals who spent time abroad recently, one in Italy and the other in Austria.
Croatia introduced new prevention measures to curb the spread of the virus that will affect travelers coming from affected countries, especially Italy. These measures include an obligatory 14 day quarantine at a government designated facility. Those who decline the option, will be sent back, said Interior Minister Davor Božinović during a press conference on Monday. Croatians returning from affected areas will be required to self-quarantine. These measures were introduced primarily due to concerns over the rapidly escalating situation in nearby Italy, where the whole country is essentially on lock-down as of Monday.
The Croatian patient confirmed last night is from Labin in Istria. He has been hospitalized in Pula with mild symptoms. People who had been in contact with him are self-isolating and their test results are expected shortly. He returned from Italy, where he had been working as a ski instructor on Saturday. He is linked to another man who was confirmed to have the virus over the weekend.
"Both men have been hospitalized. They have moderate to mild symptoms. It is early days and difficult to give a prognosis, but both individuals are healthy and young. The usual pattern for patients like these is flu-like symptoms to mild pneumonia," says Dr. Ivica Fedel the chief administrator of Pula General Hospital.
The local coronavirus task force has issued special guidelines aimed at curbing the spread of the virus in Istria County. All public events are being cancelled until April 14th. They are also asking approval from the government to shut down daycare centers, schools, and universities.
Health Minister Vili Beroš said on Tuesday that it was too early to ramp up to a nation-wide school shutdown.
Some 500 people who entered Croatia after visiting Italy have been placed under medical observation. This means that they are required to report to a doctor who will monitor the state of their health.