The new coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) was identified in China at the end of 2019. Originally known as 2019-nCoV (new coronavirus), it was renamed SARS-CoV-2 on the proposal of the World Health Organization (WHO) because of its relationship to the former Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome virus. The disease caused by it is called COVID-19 (COVID: Coronavirus Disease 2019).
More and more Hungarian citizens have been diagnosed with the coronavirus (COVID-19), bringing the number of people infected in Hungary to 261 as of today (March 26, 2020).
Hungary is now in the stage of cluster infections, when the virus spreads through communities via personal contact. The virus can be present anywhere and in anybody.
In order to slow down mass infection, it is very important that the elderly, students, those returning from abroad, and anyone else able to do so, stay at home and that everyone abides by the rules and recommendations imposed by the government.
Governments, business and citizens are on board. The country is united.
The Hungarian government is ready to provide all the support needed to protect against the coronavirus and provide the necessary supplies and measures to do so. Following last week’s introduction of the first economy protection action plan, Prime Minister Orbán announced yesterday that six additional measures will be added.
Among these are a moratorium on all loan repayments for individuals and companies until the end of this year, an exemption from payroll taxes for sectors of the economy hardest hit by the pandemic, and a deferral of monthly taxes paid by small businesses (operating under the KATA self-employment vehicle).
The government is now providing more than HUF 15 billion in additional funding to the State Health Care Center to purchase health equipment as well.
The whole country is contributing to the fight against the coronavirus. Government-run aid platforms have received over 4,000 offers of help in just four days: 60 percent volunteers, 17 percent IT, 12 percent teaching, 5.5 percent transportation, 3.5 percent service, 1.5 percent devices, and 0.5 percent real estate (apartments, boarding houses, guest house being offered)
Not only are commercial companies on board, but the world of art, too. Sandra Sandor, the designer behind Nanushka decided to close her stores and begin production of protective masks through her domestic and international network of contacts.
Other artists have decided to fight the coronavirus and boredom with live streaming. The organizers of “Stay Home!” festival have invited more than 100 bands and artists to regularly post, film and set up online meetings on their own platforms in the coming weeks. The aim of the festival is to encourage people to take coronavirus regulations and experts’ advice more seriously and to stay connected.
Many businesses are thinking of the younger generation at this time. Samsung and BOOKR Kids, for example, have made 400 tales available online for kids to enjoy, while museums, such as the Petőfi Literary Museum (PIM), are enabling virtual access to exhibitions and collections through digital content. Alternatively, kids can always choose to play some good old games such as Bohnanza where you must grow different beans or Cluedo, Harry Potter style, where you have to solve a murder; instead of the classic version, the game uses the characters and locations of the Harry Potter series.