The Portuguese government has announced further COVID measures going into effect on November 4th. There are a few specific changes, but the basic recommendation is simple: Stay at home.
The new measures cover 121 municipalities, which includes both Lisbon and Porto, and contain a mix of recommendations and what are expected to be mandatory measures.
The new Lisbon lockdown rules are:
- People have a “duty” to stay at home and refrain from being in public spaces excluding necessary trips. These trips include those for work, school, food shopping, health reasons, or to services such as post offices, banks, insurance brokers/agencies, and if you are on your way to leave mainland Portugal. Additionally, there are exceptions for those taking trips to residential centers for the elderly or disabled.
- All stores will now be required to close by 22h and restaurants will be required to close by 22:30, with the option for local councils to reduce this further within their districts.
- No gatherings of more than five people unless they come from the same household, excluding religious ceremonies and shows permitted by the rules of the Direção Geral da Saúde.
- Teleworking is expected to be made mandatory except for when it is not possible due to the nature of the work.
Additionally, there can be a maximum of six people per group in a restaurant, unless they are from the same household. This is across the whole of Portugal, not just the 121 municipalities.
The new state of emergency will be in place until Nov.ember 15th, at which point it will be reviewed. This is down to Portuguese law having a 15-day cap on states of emergency. However, it can be renewed in 15-day segments indefinitely, and these new restrictions are expected to run far past mid-November, as Prime Minister Antonio Costa said during the announcement.
The new restrictions come after Portugal saw record numbers of infections, with 4,656 just on Friday, the day before the announcement was made. This is in addition to a continuous increase in hospitalizations over the past two weeks.