Ana BRNABIĆ, Prime Minister of Serbia

Serbia Hopeful That Coronavirus Pandemic Is Slowing Down

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Expecting to end the epidemic, we have managed to keep things under control, which is a huge success for our country and all of us.

I am proud of our country, the way we have fought this fight and our health care professionals, the President, the government, the citizens.

The time is coming when the state of emergency will be abolished and our country should start recovery soon and position itself in the post-coronavirus world where nothing will be the same.

Still, now is the time to focus all our resources on places where the epidemic is the focus, such as Nišava, Pomoravlje, Braničevo districts, where a large number of people came from the diaspora.

It is important that the rest of Serbia continues to apply restrictive measures to prevent returning of another blow from the epidemic, as has happened in some countries.

Serbia has the lowest coronavirus mortality rate compared to the countries in this part of Europe, with a rate of 1.9 per cent.

Serbia began domestic production of antibody tests which will be ready within a month

Serbia ranks third by the number of tests performed per 100,000 inhabitants and expressed her expectation that we will get to the second place as soon as today.

Today, when we are on the downward trajectory of the epidemic, we see that the rate of positive cases is around 5.8 per cent over the total number tested. And although we still cannot declare victory, we have a reason to believe that we will be able to do it if we retain discipline and crisis management.

The health system in Serbia has endured, and it has the capacity to accommodate all infected, it has medical teams, ventilators and medicines, so we did not have to choose whose life to save.

The lives of the oldest citizens were largely preserved, which was one of the goals in this fight, while the other was to preserve the health system.

We have fought with heart and knowledge for the lives of citizens, with the tremendous help of partners from China to whom we will be eternally grateful, as well as to partners from the EU, who themselves have dealt with the pandemic and huge human casualties, and also to partners from Russia, USA, UAE, Norway, Hungary.

The first identified case of coronavirus in Serbia was recorded on 6 March and it was imported from Italy, with 58 people who had symptoms like COVID-19 had been tested before.

Testing began on 13 February, when the first suspected case appeared and all tested were negative, with the first death being recorded on 20 March.

Faculty of Medicine at the University of Belgrade will start the preparation of an epidemiological study of the exposure to the virus on a sample of 7,000 households in Serbia from 4 May.

Serbia has started domestic production of antibody tests, which will be done by the Institute for the Application of Nuclear Energy, with the first tests to be ready within a month.

At the moment, more countries have asked Serbia for support if we have additional amounts of antibody tests, as Serbia is in now a better position than the richer and more developed countries.

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