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|2020 COVID-19 pandemic in Serbia|
Number of confirmed cases by municipality
(as of 29 March):
6 March 2020
|Date||6 March 2020 – present |
(3 weeks and 6 days)
|Recovered||54 (as of 29 March)|
The 2020 coronavirus pandemic in Serbia is a current outbreak of Coronavirus disease 2019 in Serbia caused by SARS-CoV-2. Its first case in Serbia was reported on 5 March 2020,(www.worldometers.info)  and confirmed by Minister of Health Zlatibor Lončar, the case was a 43-year-old man from Bačka Topola who had traveled to Budapest.
On 6 March (10:00h), first case was confirmed  when a man who had been in Hungary and Subotica tested positive for the virus. The patient was later moved from a city hospital in Subotica to the Clinical Center of Vojvodina in Novi Sad because of his worsening condition.
On 9 March (18:00h), a second case was confirmed  when a Chinese citizen tested positive for the virus.
On 10 March (8:00h), two more cases were confirmed.
On 13 March (8:00h), seven more cases were confirmed. On 13 March (18:00h), four more cases were confirmed.
On 15 March (18:00h), two more cases were confirmed. At 20:15 CET, the President of Serbia Aleksandar Vučić declared a nationwide state of emergency. Serbia closed its borders to all foreigners not living in Serbia, while Serbian citizens entering the country were required to self-quarantine for up to 28 days, or face criminal charges of three years in prison. All schools, faculties and kindergartens were also closed.
On 17 March, fifteen more cases were confirmed, eight at (8:00h) and seven at (18:00h). Serbia introduced night curfew as a protection measure. The curfew will be in the place everyday from 8 p.m.(20:00h) to 5 a.m.(05:00h) Furthermore, people aged above 65 ( 70 in rural areas) are not allowed to leave their homes at any time.
On 19 March, fourteen more cases were confirmed: eight at (8:00h) and six at (18:00h). Two people recovered and were released from hospital. New protection measures were introduced, as of 20 March at 8 a.m.(08:00h) all border crossings were closed for passengers entering Serbia by roads, railway and river traffic, except for goods lorries. Furthermore, all intercity bus and train lines were suspended as of noon 20 March. It was also announced that the curfew would be soon extended.
On 20 March, 32 cases were confirmed: 15 at (08:00h) and 17 at (18:00h). At (8:00h), all the border crossings were closed for traffic, except for trucks transporting goods. At (12:00h), all traffic between cities in Serbia was banned, except for car traffic. 154 civilians were arrested during the early hours for not following the curfew. At (18:13h), a patient from Kikinda was pronounced dead, which was the first death since the beginning of the crisis. On the same day the Norwegian government sent financial aid of 5 million Euros to help combat the virus.
On 21 March, 36 new cases were confirmed: 14 at (08:00h) and 22 at (18:00h). As of 21 March new measures were put in place: all public transport was prohibited, the curfew was extended (previously from 20:00h to 05:00h) to 17:00h - 05:00h, also all business in shopping malls was prohibited except for grocery stores and pharmacies. All gatherings in public places and sports courts were also banned, as were gatherings of more than 5 people in private spaces. All catering facilities were ordered to operate for take-out food only and customers banned from entering their in-door premises, this also applied to gambling, car washes, playrooms and similar facilites.
On 22 March, a 92-year-old woman died, the second death since the start of the pandemic. Fifty-one new cases were confirmed: 17 at (8:00h)  and 34 at (18:00h) for a total of 222. The new curfew from (17:00h) to (05:00h) was implemented. It was decided that new cases would be announced once per day at (15:00h).
On 23 March, a 60-year-old woman died, the third death since the start of the pandemic. It was also announced that 3 previously infected cases were tested negative and released from hospital. Twenty-seven new cases were confirmed for a total of 249. President of Serbia Aleksandar Vučić held a press conference and announced that extensive testing would start in the next 48 hours and that from that date, everyone who tested positive for the coronavirus would be hospitalized with mild cases separated from serious cases. Mild cases would be placed in buildings with easy access where the army would install 3,000 beds, most probably in big fairgrounds or sports halls. He also said that isolation of 10 Belgrade municipalities most affected by the pandemic was being considered.
On 24 March fifty-four new cases were confirmed for a total of 303. It was also announced that in 12 previously infected cases had been tested negative and released from hospital for a total of 15.
On 27 March, a 62-year-old man from Kikinda died, for a total of 8 deaths since the start of pandemic. One more patient's test results came back positive after he had died but his cause of death was not confirmed to be due to coronavirus. Seventy one new cases were confirmed for a total of 528, and in total 42 previously hospitalised patients had been tested negative and released.
On 28 March, two more deaths were confirmed, one in Belgrade and one in Niš, for a total of 10 since the start of pandemic. 131 new cases were confirmed for a total of 659. New protective measures were put in place: everyone who entered the country after 14 March would have required self-isolation period extended from 14 to 28 days. Curfew was extended during the weekends to start at 15:00 instead of 17:00. Previous decision that allowed pet owners to go out during curfew between 20:00 and 21:00 in order to take their pets for a walk was retracted. Temporary hospital within Belgrade Fair halls was opened for all less severe cases to be isolated in with simillar hospitals soon to be organized in Novi Sad and Niš.
On 29 March, three more deaths were confirmed, two from Belgrade and one from Kikinda, for a total of 13 since the start of pandemic. 82 new cases were confirmed for a total of 741, while 54 in total are cured.
On 30 March, three more deaths were confirmed, one from Valjevo, one from Temerin and one from Belgrade, for a total of 16 since the start of pandemic. 44 new cases were confirmed for a total of 785.
On 31 March, seven more deaths were confirmed, for a total of 23 since the start of pandemic. 115 new cases were confirmed for a total of 900.
On 1 April, five more deaths were confirmed, for a total of 28 since the start of pandemic. 160 new cases were confirmed for a total of 1060.
Growth factor is defined as today's new cases/new cases on the previous day. It is indicative of the evolution of the pandemic. A continuously decreasing factor indicates that the pandemic is under control.
Seeing as Coronavirus spread throughout Europe, on February 26. president Aleksandar Vučić called for a press conference where he addressed the possibility of the virus impacting Serbia. This news conference made headlines the following days after a pulmonologist Dr. Branimir Nestorović made joking statements about the virus, calling it "the most laughable virus in the history of the mankind" and suggested that women should travel to then virus-affected Italy for shopping. The president, who was visible in the background expressing amusement and chuckling at this during the TV broadcast, later denied any accusations of portraying the virus as such by Dr Nestorović.
I cannot believe that the same people, who survived sanctions, bombing, the day-to-day bullying of all kinds, can get scared by the most laughable virus in the history of mankind, which [only] exists on Facebook.— Dr. Branimir Nestorović, Nemojte da lažete, niko nije rekao da je korona najsmešniji virus, https://www.istinomer.rs/izjava/nemojte-da-lazete-niko-nije-rekao-da-je-korona-najsmesniji-virus/
I appeal to the people to stop trusting unproven information. The epidemic in China is at its end, it started on 7 December  when the first case was reported. It is already known that virulence of the virus is in decline, hence the virus becomes more and more weak as the time passes by. But the virus is weak in any case. Here's something regarding women... The estrogen definitely protects women, they have mild symptoms and they don't die from this virus. So, women, you can go shopping to Italy, I've heard that, now, there will be huge discounts there, because now nobody wants to go to Italy. So, prepare your husbands mentally for that. I am joking, but for real, I think, I don't understand. Couple of days ago I was shocked when that story (about the virus) started because the virus itself was laughable. This is the third variant of SARS and MERS, the corona viruses, this is the third variant and is the weakest of all three. The first two went unnoticed, and now, suddenly, this third one... I see now borders are being closed, planes don't fly... An absolute nonsense.— Dr. Branimir Nestorović, Nemojte da lažete, niko nije rekao da je korona najsmešniji virus, https://www.istinomer.rs/izjava/nemojte-da-lazete-niko-nije-rekao-da-je-korona-najsmesniji-virus/