According to Public Health Institute (PHI) statistics, a total of 18 children under the age of nine have been diagnosed with coronavirus in Macedonia, all of which are in stable condition and do not require extended stays in hospital, doctor Vladimir Mikikj from the PHI said at a press conference on Monday.

At the press conference, Health Minister Venko Filipce underlined that all patients at the Skopje Clinic for Gynecology and Obstetrics who show coronavirus symptoms are being tested for the infection.

Pregnant women who have tested positive for coronavirus are isolated from the rest. Hospital staff is fully equipped and those showing symptoms are tested, Filipce said.

He said that all the colleagues of the lab technician from the Clinic for Infectious Diseases who tested positive for the coronavirus, have tested negative for the infection and authorities are now trying to determine whether he was infected outside the workplace. The clinic, the minister added, is working as usual.

Regarding the government’s position on cremating diseased COVID-19 patients, Filipce underlined that special protocols are in place for the burials of coronavirus victims and funeral attendees are not at risk of being exposed to the infection.