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Planet is entering ‘new social distancing era’, Garcia says

The planet may be on the verge of “a new era of face masks, disinfecting and new routines of social distancing and self-isolation” and Gibraltar must play its part. 

That was the message from Deputy Chief Minister Dr Joseph Garcia yesterday as he warned against complacency despite a slowing infection rate.

“This is far from over and you must do what we ask you,” he said adding: “This is the new normal”.

“How long will this all this last? The truth is that nobody knows. None of us.”

“The World Health Organisation has made it clear that there is no quick end in sight. A new virus has created new challenges. But there is always hope.”

This comes as the Government provided, for the first time, a breakdown of confirmed Covid-19 cases.

Gibraltar has had a total of 133 confirmed cases of Covid-19 of which 61 were male and 72 female.

Breaking that figure down further by age - 27 patients were in the 0-30 age bracket representing 20% of the total.

66 patients were in the 31-50 age bracket representing the largest single group  (50%).

32 patients were in the 51-70 age bracket or 24% of the total.

And of the 133, Only eight patients were over 70, representing 6% of the total.

Less people have been infected in the over 70s category than in any other, Dr Garcia said, adding that this was attributable to the “swift and decisive” action taken to protect them.

“You will recall that on 11 March we advised the elderly to stay at home, this was the prelude to a complete lockdown,” he said.

“A number of conditions have now been met so options are being explored to allow those over 70 to exercise outdoors.”

“But whatever may be agreed going forward, the advice is the same. You will always be safer at home.”

“Despite the numbers, there is no room for complacency. We are not out of the woods yet.”