(Photo: Fernando Zhiminaicela/PIXABAY) (Photo: Fernando Zhiminaicela/PIXABAY)

Health experts say Monday's 7.3 percent infection rate marks the continuation of a four-day downward trend in cases, but warned citizens not to expect a relaxation or restrictive COVID measures anytime soon.

"There will be no relaxation of the measures," said Health Minister Vili Beroš.

The minister warned that recent studies showed the novel coronavirus continued to be spread by people with no obvious symptoms.

"An example that describes this very well is the recent research by American scientists which showed that over 50 percent of new coronavirus cases had been infected by asymptomatic carriers, that is why the wearing of masks and practicing social distancing continues to be very important," he said

At the same time, 17,000 more doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine have arrived in Croatia.

The director of the University Hospital for Infectious Diseases, Alemka Markotić, assured the public that the vaccine would be effective against new strains of the virus as well.

"The medical faculty at the University of Texas at Galveston - together with Pfizer - have proven that the Pfizer vaccine is effective against the new strains of the virus which resulted in rapid transmission in the UK and Ireland," she noted.

Since 25 February, when Croatia registered its first case, a total of 220,223 people have contracted the novel coronavirus, 4,403 of them have died, while 210,844 have recovered, 718 of whom in the last 24 hours.

To date 1,080,918 people have been tested, including 3,141 in the last 24 hours.

Source: HRT