“What is going to be done in Lisbon is to reinforce in some way the mechanisms that already exist, in order to be able to test more people and go a little further in the links between people confirmed with covid-19 or who have been in contact with a person who has been confirmed as covid-19. We are well aware that cutting transmission is absolutely essential,” he said.
Speaking to journalists after a visit to the Hospital of Vila Franca de Xira, where he signalled the transition from private clinical management to the State, which will be effective from June 1, the official recalled that the metropolitan area of Lisbon has already experienced a similar epidemiological situation at the beginning of last summer and did not rule out a possible setback in the region in the respective rules of easing of lockdown.
“There are multiple factors that have been explaining this increase in cases in Lisbon and Vale do Tejo, but we already had a relatively similar situation in June / July. The mechanisms at that time were implemented and today they are much more streamlined ", he stressed, underlining: "If necessary, the rules are clear and we have already seen many counties move in the direction of increased lockdown and this will continue to happen".
According to Diogo Serras Lopes, the intensification of testing will follow the same model as previous approaches, "with PCR tests, rapid tests and the application of tests both sectorally - where outbreaks are effectively sectorial - as well as in family or neighbourhood contexts". However, he avoided setting a target for the number of tests and the positivity rate for this test reinforcement operation.
“There is no metric for the necessary tests. As many tests as necessary will be carried out to analyze all suspicions of covid cases or people who may have had contact with positive covid-19 cases,”he said.