Hungary's daily COVID-19 cases jump to highest since April

by Reuters
Wednesday, 27 October 2021 08:02 GMT

(Adds detail and regional context)

BUDAPEST, Oct 27 (Reuters) - Hungary reported a jump in daily COVID-19 cases to 3,125 on Wednesday, its highest daily tally since April, the government said, urging people to take up vaccines that are widely available nationwide.

Hungary has seen a steady increase in infections over the past weeks - with Wednesday's numbers jumping from 1,668 daily new cases a week ago - but its daily new infections still remain below the numbers elsewhere in central and eastern Europe.

Hungary, a country of 10 million, has reported 30,647 deaths since the start of the pandemic. More than 5.7 million people have been fully vaccinated against the virus so far, and more than 1.1 million have received a third, booster shot.

The region has the European Union's lowest vaccination rates, an unwelcome distinction in which both political and economic factors play a role, and deadlier variants of the virus are spreading there fast.

Neighbouring Romania is at the forefront of the fresh wave of COVID-19 sweeping across the region, with one of the world's highest mortality rates and hospitals struggling to cope.

In Hungary there are still no restrictions, and mask wearing is not mandatory in closed spaces, only in healthcare facilities.

Janos Szlavik, the country's chief epidemiologist, told public television on Tuesday that some measures will become unavoidable if infection numbers worsen.

(Reporting by Krisztina Than and Anita Komuves; Editing by Alison Williams)

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