Turkey’s normalization process starts on March 1. Minister of Health Fahrettin Koca said, “We are working meticulously in normalization steps.”
Fahrettin Koca used the following expressions in his post on Twitter: “We will normalize gradually with the on-site decision period. As of March 1, the process will start with our provincial sanitation boards chaired by our governors at four risk levels within the framework of the determined criteria.”
Four Covid Categories
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced on Wednesday that they would divide the provinces into four groups in line with the criteria set by the Ministry of Health, while giving information about the normalization schedule in a statement made after the cabinet meeting on Wednesday.
Four Categories are these:
Blue: Provinces with less than 10 cases per 100,000 are low risk Yellow: Provinces with 11-35 cases per 100,000 are “medium risk”. Orange: Provinces with 36-100 cases per 100,000 are “high risk” Red: Provinces with more than 100 cases per hundred thousand will be determined as “very high risk”
How will the transition between categories be?
According to the first details shared by the Minister of Health, Koca, the number of cases will be published weekly on a provincial basis. Whether the measures are changed or not will be reviewed every two weeks. For example, a province that moves from “high risk” to “very high risk” will know ahead of time that additional restrictions are coming. Whether restaurants and the service sector will be opened on a provincial basis, how curfew restrictions will be implemented can be followed from these data. Changes in the measures will be decided after 2 weeks of monitoring.
What measures will be lifted?
President Erdogan said, “Starting from the weekend, we are gradually removing the curfew restrictions according to the case, vaccination, and other relevant criteria in our provinces. The important thing here is that the number of cases is constantly decreasing in all our provinces. The more careful our citizens are about this issue, the more sensitive they behave, the more they improve the outlook in their own provinces, the faster the normalization calendar will advance,”
It is not yet clear which normalization steps will be taken in the identified risk categories and to what extent the measures will be lifted. However, the situation in the region where the provinces are located may require the continuation of some measures. For example, if the epidemic is very high in a province, but the number of cases is very low in the surrounding provinces, travel restrictions on entering and leaving the risky city may be considered. The Ministry of Health started to publish the map showing the ratio of the number of cases in the provinces to the population at the beginning of the week. On the map on the website of the Ministry of Health, it is explained how many cases were detected in each province last week, based on 100 thousand people.
Written by Irem Yildiz