COVID-19 numbers across the country continue to reach eye-watering numbers with over 300 people having lost their lives to the disease since the start of February, the highest death rate since the beginning of the year.
Cluj-Napoca is one of the cities with the highest number of COVID-19 cases in Romania and yesterday (Feb 3rd 2022) saw the highest number of daily recorded deaths and ICU occupancy.
111 people lost their lives to COVID-19 across Romania and 9 of those were recorded in Cluj, which was 6 more than the previous day, making it the worst day so far for the county.
Romania ranked 20th in the world for most recorded deaths on Feb 3rd and 10th in Europe. According to data, Romania is also ranking 7th in Europe for critical cases, where the disease has progressed to the stage where serious intervention is required.
This is also reflected in the current intensive care unit (ICU/ATI) occupancy in Cluj, which is currently recorded at 66 admissions. ICU admissions have steadily increased since the start of the year, as have recorded deaths.
These record numbers are delivered, 3 days after the government suggested that the “State of Alert”, which is the nationwide response to the COVID-19 pandemic. On February 1st, health minister, Alexandru Rafila said, “I think we will return to normal by the end of March. Normal means that the alert state will probably no longer be needed. I had many meetings with representatives of various industries: tourism, HoReCa, large retailers, large investors in Romania. Everyone wants predictability, a sincere discussion that will make it possible to restart the economy, and I think that by the end of March, we can have very serious discussions so that people know what to do in the coming months,”.
Many have criticised Romania's handling of the pandemic, with divisions across both government and the population regarding the relaxation of measures at the end of 2021 and the recent changes to travel into the country. Some have accused Romania of simply copying other countries, without assessing the impact on the population, due to the very low vaccination rate in Romania compared to countries who have started relaxing their COVID-19 restrictions.