In an interview with Público newspaper and Rádio Renascença, Jorge Botelho, secretary of State responsible for the regional coordination of covid-19, said that he spoke with the president of the board of directors of the Algarve hospital centre, who admitted this possibility.

“Today the chairman of the board of directors of the Algarve hospital centre told me that they were planning things and doing everything to try to avoid jeopardizing normal activity and she was already saying that maybe health professionals will have to sacrifice holidays that they are fully entitled to in a bid to control the pandemic,” he said.

Asked if this can be done without a state of emergency, the government official said yes, "as long as it is agreed with professionals and professionals understand".

The Secretary of State for Decentralization and Local Administration admits that the situation in the Algarve is getting worse, but criticized the decision of the Regional Health Administration to close schools in five Algarve councils for not having been articulated with the mayors and the Government.

Regarding the possibility of limiting entrances and exits in the region, Jorge Botelho said he is not a supporter of this type of measures and defends “the supervision of the authorities”.

“We don't have a disastrous situation in the region, we have a worrying situation. Tomorrow [today] the Council of Ministers will evaluate", said the official, insisting: "I am not a supporter of closing a mainly in a tourist region, but the matrix must be applied while it exists and it has been giving signals to the mayors and to all public entities, and we know how it works”.

In the interview, the government official acknowledged some problems with vaccination in the Algarve, admitting that the centres are vaccinating below capacity, and defended “a superior central scheduling, an 'overbooking' to fill one or another failure in vaccination”, revealing that “there are people who are missing their vaccination”.