PICK OF THE WEEK: Andorra (Pyrenees)

Main places:

Andorra la VellaEscaldes-EngordanySan Julia de LoriaLa MassanaOrdinoEncampCanilloPas de la Casa


• During this week, Andorra will be receiving all the material needed for the protection of healthcare staff.
• Medicine is arriving in sufficient quantity but The Minister of Health emphasized that “The most powerful weapon we have is confinement. We must maintain the attitude of not giving legs to the virus.”
• Joan Martínez Benazet emphasized that today the Government approved a Decree of exceptional measures in the healthcare field. The aim is to protect the workers of public and private healthcare centres, as well as health and social care professionals.
• Andorra has 1 ventilator for every 3,900 inhabitants. Catalonia is working to reach that number. It currently has 1 for every 11,000 inhabitants.
• Benazet said, some countries have decided not to offer ventilators to patients over 80. Andorra is taking measures in the hopes that they do not have to make that decision.


• In accordance with our collaboration agreement, patients who have to undergo treatment or tests in neighbouring Spain or France may continue to do so as long as the treatment is essential. Those treatments that are not essential will be postponed.
• Martínez Benazet: “When Europe saw the disease as being far away, Europe was actually already full of mild cases. And when we saw the problems in Italy, Covid-19 was already in the whole of Europe. There is a part of the population that is carrying the virus but with minor symptoms.”
• As well as encouraging us all to stay at home, he congratulated us for being good civic citizens.
• There is an excellent link from the SAAS health service about precautions to take whilst sick at home.


183 currently positive – up 21 from yesterday.
33 in hospital, 4 in El Cedre, 6 in ICU (1 is 24, 3 are over 50, and 2 are over 70) plus 3 more in UCI pending results.
9 positives in El Cedre with some 14 pending results.
48 healthcare staff are positive.
62 healthcare staff are now out of quarantine
31 have tested negative
150 are still in quarantine
3 have recovered
2 have died but 1 may not have died of C19.

It can take 14 days for symptoms to develop. You could be carrying the virus without knowing it. You could give it to vulnerable people like me! And then where would you get your information from?



• A form is now available for companies and the self-employed to apply for credits to overcome the consequences of COVID19. You can find it at https://t.co/KWDHsrZTgP
• The Minister reminded people that companies that have dismissed employees do not qualify for government assistance. He also mentioned that they have been checking every registration case for lay-offs.
• The spokesman, Jover, said that the Government had approved, by decree, to extend all exceptional measures introduced for the health emergency situation caused by the new coronavirus. “The contagion curve has not flattened out sufficiently”. In other words we stay in house confinement.
• There have been suggestions that domestic cleaning staff should be allowed to go to private homes. This still has to be confirmed.
• Donations welcome! Eric Jover has informed the public that the Government has agreed with the Andorran Bank Association that they can open accounts in all Andorran banks to receive donations from companies and individuals to help alleviate the situation created in the Principality by Covid-19. The money would be used for health equipment and vulnerable people. (This looks like an excellent way our international community could help the country that has welcomed us. Just ask your bank about it. C.A.)
• From Thursday, the solidarity telephone number of @AndorraTelecom 828 will be activated. Then, if you use it, with every SMS you send, you will automatically donate 2€.
• Minister Jover said, “As the crisis evolves so will our measures be adapted to the situation. Therefore, we are now working on various possible scenarios of closure and the resumption of the economy when restrictions are lifted”


• Information from the mask-making initiative. From now on our contact email is: [email protected]. Here you will find the pattern to make the masks according to the directives of the Ministry of Health. You can also check out a video tutorial at this link: https://youtu.be/GcAK5-BW1SM. If you already have the material you can start making the masks and later we will send you the information about collecting them. Otherwise, we will contact you as soon as possible to help you. (If you need more advice do email Renata Horn at [email protected] C.A.)
• As of today, Government-designed, volunteer homemade masks, (not suitable for healthcare workers) reached 2,000.
• The government is going to distribute the home-made face masks to those that need them for work purposes such as delivery drivers, shop workers etc (They will inform people about it via social media.)
• The face masks are reusable and should be washed with detergent at 60°c in a washing machine.
• Professionals in non-health essential activities and vulnerable people can apply for masks at [email protected].

TWEETS from Comuns and others.

All seven comuns are collaborating economically with the Government to relieve the consequences of the halt of economic activity due to the health crisis.

• It has been reported to me that the comú has been ringing vulnerable people. C.A.
• The snow ploughs are working to keep the roads open in case of an emergency. If you must go out don’t forget to use the usual obligatory snow equipment.
• We continue to serve you: cleaning and sanitizing the streets, assisting our seniors, controlling uncivilised behaviour, transporting masks, and answering calls for urgent procedures on 730 000. (Add this number to you Useful Numbers list.C.A.)
• The Comú re-tweeted this message from Andorra’s Police. Another day of #quedatacasa is over. These are difficult times but, between us all, we will overcome the #COVID -19. Today was another day, today is one less day.
• Responsibility, civility, collaboration and union are words that gain more strength than ever, in the face of the health emergency we are experiencing. The Senior Consul emphasised this in a video yesterday evening. “We are working to make sure no one gets left behind.”
• The Traffic Police provide a daily distribution of meals to the parish’s elderly. The priority in these difficult times is the vulnerable, the isolated and the elderly.

• The FT is offering some of its pages on the Coronavirus as a free page to read. Stats are good https://www.ft.com/coronavirus-latest from Gaye Keep.
• I rang the Red Cross yesterday and was answered by a lovely woman called Anna Ferguson-Smith speaking perfect English.
• Phone Partners. Don’t forget to check if any of your elderly or isolated friends would like to become a Phone Partner. I’ve got three and we chat at set times each day and make sure we have a good laugh too – excellent for the lungs and the immune system! If anyone reading this would like to find a partner please email me. And anyone happy to be one please do the same and I will try to link you up.
• Sophie <[email protected]> is happy to help coordinate shopping lists and communications in Catalan with the shops via mail, phone and internet. She is in self-isolation after travelling so cannot leave her home.
• SuperU have the following special shopping hours for seniors, Mon – Sat: 9.30h to 10.30h and Sunday: 9h to 10h. LeClerk/Hyper are said to be doing something similar.

Culturally yours,



Look for about the author of the blog Clare Allcard


Look here for the whole blog “Cultural events in Andorra with Clare Allcard”

See also Andorra travel guide

See also Pyrenees travel guide

See also France travel guide

See also Spain travel guide

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