PICK OF THE WEEK: Andorra (Pyrenees)

Main places:

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


· Homemade masks have got a reprieve! (See Feedback for further advice.) Some 90 of the country’s young volunteers are now making masks coordinated by t General Conseller, Roger Padreny. He can be contacted at [email protected]

· They are now expecting Covid-19’s ‘peak’ in between 7 and 14 days but the Minister of Health assured us that, in case the situation changes and the peak comes earlier than expected, we are ready for it.

· In Andorra we have 8 beds in the ICU and a resuscitation area where a second ICU could be created with 6 beds. Meanwhile 20 patients can be breathing-assisted at the same time.

· Martínez Benazet warns that 15 days of house confinement will not be enough to stop the contagion.

· Gloves and hand gel have already arrived in Andorra while the face masks are expected on Monday.


The general numbers are the same as yesterday.

2 residents from El Cedre retirement home tested positive.

11 have symptoms.

The rest, including from both the home and the hotel, do not have any symptoms.

RECOMMENDATIONS from the Ministry of Health

· Please go shopping on your own, use gloves to touch doors, carts and anything else while shopping.

· Martínez Bezant said it is a mistake to store provisions for a month at home. We won’t run out of food.

· Please wash your hands frequently and for at least 20 seconds each time.

· The Minister of Health recommends to use paracetamol rather than ibuprofen for pain and fever. This debate is ongoing and seems to change daily. Based on the latest information, WHO is now saying it is not recommending against the use of ibuprofen….

· The Highest Risk groups are the old, those with chronic illnesses such as cardiovascular and heart problems, diabetes, respiratory issues and a low immune system.

· It is recommended to wash dogs’ paws after each walk.

· There are volunteers to walk the dog for people who are ill. They can be contacted via 188.


· Police checks are going to be used to encourage adherence to Government rules.

· 985 people have so far enquired about the government form to be used to help seasonal workers return home.

· Eric Jove explained that the Omnibus Law aims to provide companies with help over lost income. The goal is for companies to be able to continue hiring workers. Employees are “the basis of the pyramid”.

· The government does not believe it is necessary to oblige people to conform. He believes that the citizenry today does not need to be forced..

· The Alert and Emergency Status laws will be processed tomorrow.

· The Government and Comluins are revueing their budgets to decide on priorities.



Those citizens who need help with everyday living can ask for:

· Help with washing and getting dressed.

· Physical help with getting up, walking and getting back to bed.

· Change of dressings and control of nutrition.

· Supervising the taking their medication correctly.

· Buying food and organising the home.

· Orientation and support for the patient’s carer. It didn’t actually say whom to ask but presumably start with 188

· Over 7,000 calls have been recorded to 188. The themes revolve around virus screening from the car, temporary consultations and also in relation to possible layoffs.

· In the last week there was 700% extra internet use.

TWEETS from around Andorra.


· Samples are already being collected for PCR testing. (This was accompanied by a picture of a driver being tested in his car.)


· Remember a phone number is available for the elderly who need help: 350 502


· We have closed the Rec del Solà and the Rec de l’Obac. The trickle of people walking these paths has been constant despite health recommendations TO STAY HOME. The measure has been taken in view of the number of people who walk there these days when they have been advised to stay home during this COVID-19 state of emergency. Traffic police will continue to conduct random checks to make sure that no one is walking there. Remember that, at several points, the path does not allow the minimum two metre safety distance between people to prevent coronavirus transmission.


· Sun, rain or snow, #quedatacasa STAY AT HOME. To stop the coronavirus, your attitude is of primary importance. Put the brakes on and don’t go out.


· Homemade facemasks. First choose your fabric. In 2013 research was carried out into the filtration efficiency of different materials against virus-sized particles.

Surgical mask = 90%, Vacuum cleaner bag = 86%, Tea towel = 76%, Cotton mix 70%, antimicrobial pillowcase (!) = 69%, Pillowcase = 57%, Silk = 543%, Cotton T-shirt = 51% and Scarf = 49%. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2013;0:1-6). However they do say that the vacuum cleaner bags are quite difficult to breathe through…

And now to the fun part. After a bit of searching I found this delightfully silent video which shows, through hand signs and subtitles, a quick and easy way to create a mask.

Let’s be positive: ?????

Finally, why not choose a Phone Partner or two amongst your elderly friends? I’ve got three. We call each other at a set time each day just to say a cheery hello and check we are all OK.


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”

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