Back 2020.06.17

Quarantine lifted, but some restrictions remain in place

The three-month long lockdown ends on Wednesday night. It will be replaced, as of 17 June, by the state of national emergency. It will involve restrictions as detailed below.

Border crossing

The controls of cross-border movement will continue, and restrictions will remain in place as regards flights and ferries to Lithuania from countries affected by the coronavirus. Entry will be allowed only for those citizens of the countries of the European Economic Area, the Swiss Confederation and of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and persons lawfully residing in these countries, where the incidence of COVID-19 (coronavirus infection) in the country of their residence has not exceeded 25 cases/100 000 population in the last 14 calendar days. The list of such countries shall be published every Monday by the State Commander of National Emergency Operations. Screening will be carried out at airports, Klaipėda Seaport and five EU external border crossing points with Belarus and Russia: the temperature of arriving persons will be measured and they will be required to complete within 48 hours a passenger locator card by registering electronically or by filling in a paper form. 14-day isolation is recommended for all persons arriving from these countries; it will be possible to obtain a certificate of incapacity for work if mandatory isolation is accepted. Arrivals from other countries that are not affected by coronavirus will not be subject to any restrictions. They will be informed and advised on what to do if symptoms occur. There are no controls on passengers crossing the EU’s internal borders (Latvia, Poland).

Restrictions on economic activity

The Government is working to help business maintain its liquidity, but some restrictions on economic activity remain in place to protect the population against the new outbreak of coronavirus. A safe distance of 2 meters must be maintained in public points of service and trade (distance may be smaller if there is a partition or personal protective equipment), at least 1 meter distance must be kept in queues, it is mandatory to sanitise trolleys and shopping baskets in trade venues and hands of shop workers and customers. The employer should send home his worker if he shows the symptoms or provide him with isolated premises. Both visitors and staff are advised to wear personal protective equipment (face masks, shields, respirators, gloves, etc.).

Leisure and entertainment venues must also observe distance of at least 1 meter in the queues, they have disinfect their premises, observe hand hygiene, and it is recommended for the employees to wear personal protective equipment. Workers with symptoms are not allowed to work, or they can be assigned an isolation. The same restrictions apply in the case of gambling houses (casinos), gaming arcades and bingo halls.

Catering establishments (restaurants, cafes, bars, nightclubs and other places of entertainment) have to keep a safe distance of 2 meters between the people sitting at the tables (distance may be smaller if there is a partition), disinfect the premises, and observe hand hygiene (washing and/or sanitising). Workers with symptoms are not allowed to work, or they can be assigned an isolation, and personal protective equipment is recommended. There is no restriction on food service in public catering establishments (buffet), there is no longer a restriction on working hours.

The number of participants and/or spectators allowed in cultural, entertainment, sports or other events will increase from 17 June to 150 people indoors and to 700 outdoors, and from 1 July until 16 July – to 200 indoors and up to 1 000 outdoors. Performers, organisers and service personnel are not included in this figure. From 17 June, indoor spaces may not be filled by more than 50%, seating of participants (spectators) must be in staggered arrangement with alternate chairs to maintain gap; the Government is committed to increasing the number of participants and/or spectators in stages, depending on the epidemiological situation. Events will continue to follow the requirements laid down by the State Commander of National Emergency Operations for the management of the flow of people, safe physical distance, and other key requirements for public health safety, hygiene and the provision of persons with necessary personal protective equipment.

Restrictions on public and administrative services

The lifting of the quarantine has removed restrictions from education providers given they satisfy the requirements for the protection of public health, hygiene and the provision of persons with the necessary personal protective equipment. In all cases, the premises must be disinfected, hand hygiene must be observed, and employees of education establishments must not be allowed to work if they show symptoms or must be sent to isolation. Failing to meet the requirements, education activities will have to continue in a remote mode.

Social care establishments must also comply with all the requirements for public health safety, hygiene and the use of necessary personal protective equipment: disinfection, hand hygiene. Workers with symptoms are not allowed to work, or they can be assigned an isolation.

Health care providers must have a phased service resumption plan, and visitor flows must be managed in accordance with the procedure established by the head of a medical facility. Remote services are encouraged, while allowing health care providers to choose the method of providing services which are in the best interest of the patient. Health care providers should strengthen infection control, make provisions of personal protective equipment and use it, and provide for a testing strategy.

Photo: Andrius Aleksandravičius