“We have the situation monitored and controlled”, said Miguel Albuquerque, stressing that the pandemic in the region “is not serious” from the point of view of public health, as around 85% of the population is vaccinated against the virus.

“It's not worth getting hysterical,” said Miguel Albuquerque, indicating that the Regional Government (PSD/CDS-PP) will assess the situation at the end of the month and, eventually, proceed with the “necessary measures to avoid large gatherings”.

The statements by the president of the Regional Government were made shortly after the Regional Secretariat for Health and Civil Protection reported the occurrence of three more deaths associated with Covid-19 in the last 24 hours – two men aged 84 and 79 and a woman aged 95 years, all with associated comorbidities, who were hospitalised at the Dr. Nélio Mendonça Hospital, in Funchal. These deaths bring the total number of deaths to 83.

According to the most recent data, the Madeira archipelago, with about 251 thousand inhabitants, registers 405 active cases of Covid-19, of which 359 are locally transmitted and 46 are imported, in a total of 12,754 confirmed since the beginning of the pandemic, with 30 hospitalized patients, five of them in intensive care.

Miguel Albuquerque stressed, however, that the autonomous region will not close.

The Madeiran government official relates the increase in the number of cases in the archipelago with the growing trend of infections in Europe, but recognizes that there is also a “greater relaxation” of people, which is why he calls for vaccination and the taking of the third dose.

“It is essential to have a vaccination and it is very important, at this time, that the European [Medical Agency] authorizes the vaccination of young people aged between six and 11 years. It is essential that we broaden the spectrum of vaccination”, he declared.