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Archive for the ‘Health’ Category

This is a hoopoe bird/Τσαλαπετεινός that we saw in our garden a few days ago.

At the moment there are many of these birds around on the island. What is so stunning about the birds is that when the land on the ground or are excited they extend the feathers on their head like a fan. Just beautiful! It might be my idea but I think I see a lot more birds this year than I did last year. Not so much traffic on the roads?

Some news about the corona epidemic in Greece particularly. A lot of experts talk about the use of masks and gloves. Whether to use them or not. What I have gathered (official press conference here in Greece) is that it is not mandatory to use them as the general public but it is when you are ill or working with corona patients.

An outbreak of corona patients in a neighborhood (thank you for correcting me M. it was wrong saying it was a camp) where a lot of gypsies live, in Larissa has caused a lot of commotion and severe quarantine measures have been taken. The patients have been isolated and the area that they live in is in complete lock down. Food and medicines and other help will be provided daily.

Mr. Tsiodras has emphasized yesterday in the daily press conference that now is not the time when the people of Greece should be divided and hate and racism should not be spread when the virus is found in a vulnerable group of citizens. We have to fight the virus together and together we will conquer it he said. No open air markets will be held anymore in the province of Thessalia and sales of goods from trucks, on the street is forbidden.

Schools, universities will remain closed until the 10th of May.

The last couple of days have been full with sunshine here. Maybe it reflects the optimistic news about corona patients in the country. We have to stay inside though as much as possible and see how the next two weeks will evolve in Greece and of course in the rest of the world where maybe other measure will be taken.

Today and tomorrow it is Easter in many places in the world. Everything is different but I am sure people will celebrate these days in a new way, with a lot of meaning. Today in Greece it is Lazarus Saturday, tomorrow Palm Sunday. No church will be open for the public but services can be followed via television, radio and the internet.

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This amazing photo was made by photographer Costas Andreou. The copyright is his.

The bad weather that was predicted has taken hold of Skopelos the last three days. A lot of rain and very heavy winds were the main menu during these days. Roads were damaged and many sand slides have taken place. Especially in the areas of Glossa, Old Klima, Loutraki and Elios but also the Raches road, the road to Glyfoneri and the road from Karya to Elios.

Skiathos island was badly hit too. Both mayor’s have asked if the islands could be called in a state of emergency.
One positive thing; the corona slogan “stay home stay safe” is easy to follow with this bad weather.

The spread of the corona virus in Greece is slow. All the experts are cautious with being too optimistic. The lock down measures are still heavy, the sms messages continue, we all know them now. 2 for shopping, 4 for helping out somebody in need, 6 for a walk….

Easter will be spend by everybody at home. Nobody can go to their summer houses. There is talk of closing down the toll booths on highways so there can be more control of who wants to leave. The plan is that Greek orthodox Church services can be seen via the television, radio or the internet. Only people with disabilities are exempt from the measures about swimming or other outdoor activities.

The Greek government realizes that it must be stressful for many people to stay at home, families with children, people alone. A national helpline has been set up and will help families, elderly when this is necessary.
A new measure is that doctors can visit patients with medical problems at home and these doctors can determine whether hospitalization is necessary. The second measures is that in big cities local health centers will be set up or are set up to take in patients who think they have the corona virus. After examination there will be decided if they have to go to the hospital. All these measures are taken to unburden the hospitals and staff.

Help on Skopelos
If anybody on Skopelos needs medical help, please call the health center at (0030) 2424022222.
If you need other help you can call the municipality:
Telephone numbers for help from the municipality
For the community of Skopelos :
Tel : 2424022834, 6977701070
For the community of Glossa:
Tel:2424033502, 6981219192, 6981733183
For the community of Elios:
Tel:6983717851, 6977161064

Faros the non-profit organization that helps people with cancer and other life threatening illnesses understands that the current events are particularly difficult for the people who belong to so-called “vulnerable groups (chronic patients etc) Faros believes that they must contribute as much as they can to protect and support, the psychological state of these patients.
Patients can call Maria Kafandari (psychologist) on (0030) 6978955539, from 10.00 to 14.00 hours and from 17.00 to 21.00 hours (Monday-Friday)


This amazing photo was made by photographer Costas Andreou. The copyright is his.

Stay safe, stay home

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Over the years I have planted many bulbs, from my native country the Netherlands, in my garden. Many have not survived but I am always very happy when I see, for instance, one single tulip peaking out of a flower pot

It is and it will be a custom in Greece to wish everybody a good month and especially under these difficult circumstances that we are all living in it sounds even more heartfelt when you wish it to somebody. It might also be the start of a conversation that you can have with somebody who needs to cope, just like you and me with this phenomenon.

A couple of things.
1) The next few days will bring bad weather with rain, heavy winds (see below)

2) The Greek government has set up two projects where employers and employees are helped (at least in the next month) because of the corona virus. It concerns businesses that had to close because of the corona virus and employees that were (temporarily) fired because of the corona virus. Ask your accountant about it and how you can apply for a benefit.

3) In these times it is important, I think, that we, citizens think about the people that remain working and are helping to keep things running. In case of the people working for the municipality, who pick up the garbage, it is important that we make their life/work a little bit easier and not harder. The risk of contamination is a real possibility for them. If you have the chance to bring your garbage to the big bin and not leave it out on the street please do this.

4) If you need a new prescription for medicines it is possible to do this online. If you cannot get it directly from the health center anymore please write to me and I will write about it on the blog.

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Good morning everybody and I hope you all are well.
The response from Skopelos news readers after my post about medical equipment for the health center has been really good. Quite a few people contacted me to ask where they could donate. For those who still want to: please contact the persons involved if you want to contribute, their contact details are in my last post on Sunday.

Skopelos town has a new pharmacy which is located opposite the children’s playground, behind the Xenia building and close to the Platanos square.

Irini Petropoulo is the new owner. She wants the public to know that she has realized that more and more the public wants to use natural products as well as the well known medicines. This is why she provides many homeopathy, aromatherapy and plant based therapy products. She says; for your health we advice as best as we can.

The telephone number of the pharmacy is (030) 24240 22378.
Because of the special circumstances concerning the virus the pharmacy is open every day from 08.30 until 16.30 hours. Irini speaks English, French and Russian! We want to wish her the best of luck with her new business.

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This post is from Georgia Patseas and Silje Kramer. They are trying to raise money to buy two breath ventilators for the health center.

As you all are aware of, we are facing very challenging situation related to the Corona virus pandemic.
We have been in contact with the health center and understand they are in urgent need for some equipment in the event of the virus infecting people on Skopelos. We are looking for two ventilators (breathing machines)
These are in high demand due to the virus crises, and we are waiting for the confirmation that we can get the two.

These machines are called BPAP (bilevel positive airway pressure device). BPAP is a type of ventilator, a device that helps with breathing. It can be of vital help for severe Corona infection hitting the lungs, but it may be used when other health problems are making it hard to breathe. A BPAP can help you breathe with any of these conditions:
– Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
– Obstructive sleep apnea
– Obesity hypo-ventilation syndrome
– Pneumonia
– Asthma flare-up
– Poor breathing after surgery
– Neurological disease that disturbs breathing
So, for sure, these ventilators could be very helpful also AFTER the virus crises.

If you would like to contribute, please contact us via Messenger or telephone to Georgia Patseas (+ 30-699 337 2162) or Silje Kramer (+30-697 340 5121/ +47 950 21 778)

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Historic events are happening all over the world and in Greece.

At 18.00 hours on Sunday the 22th of March 2020 the Greek PM, Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced a nationwide lock down (everybody at home) starting Monday morning the 23rd of March at 06.00 hours until the 6th of April in order to prevent the further spread of the corona virus in the country.

In this second update I am showing the printed statement with the reasons of going out of the house. I am sure it will be difficult to obtain this paper so most people will either write on a white paper the reason they are on the street or they will send an SMS.

At the top you fill in your name and your address, area that you live on Skopelos plus the time that you are travelling.

Next you need to give a reason why you are on the street. Put an X in the box (es)

B1 visit to pharmacy or doctor after telephone call with the involved

B2 visit to supermarket, fuel station, bakery, post office etc. that cannot do delivery

B3 visit to the bank if internet banking is not possible

B4 help to member of the family with health problems or elderly that need help

B5 Funeral

B6 Short walk close to your home for exercise or to walk your dog

Put a date on the paper and your signature and the place that you live.

If you don’t have the form use a white paper and do the same:
-At the top you fill in your name and your address, area that you live on Skopelos plus the time that you are travelling.
-Give a reason why you are on the street, B1 and B6 for instance.
–Sign it with a date and a place you live on Skopelos

I will update on measures that might be only for Skopelos later. Also about the SMS message. So far I know the SMS number is 13033 and in the message you write the reason you are on the street with the number (s) choose from 1 to 6 a space and your name and address. you will receive a message back which you can show when you are stopped by the police or port police to check where you are going)

If you ignore the lock down for any other reason than stated above you will receive a fine of 150 euro’s, each time.

Not knowing exactly but trying to avoid anxiety and stress for all here on Skopelos I am giving some tips for the next weeks: It think it is important that you have your identity card or passport with you and maybe also your residence permit ( if you have one) Only two persons can be in a car, not more. When stopped by the police, the port police etc. explain if you are a permanent resident, a long term visitor or that you recently have arrived and that you know about the lock down and what actions you have taken (filled in paper, written statement or SMS)

The form I found on the website epixeiro.gr

Last alert message from the government

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Greek PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced a nationwide lock down starting Monday morning at 06.00 hours until the 6th of April in order to prevent the further spread of the corona virus in the country.

There will be six reasons that allow you to go out and you need have to have a paper with you stating why you are on the street. This can be via:
1) a printed statement (mostly for work reasons)
2) a white paper stating the same until you have the printed statement or
3) via an SMS (free)

More info later via skopelosnews.wordpress.com

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Update corona virus Skopelos

The corona virus news effect everybody all over the world. This blog tries to inform those on and off the island about what is going on here on Skopelos. These last couple of days I have written mostly about measures taken by the government and help that is available here. It might not be very interesting for those that are in other parts of the world and they have their own worries but I want to ask you not to unsubscribe of the blog. Please stay in touch. We value your input very much. We value your comments. I want to thank Lisa for her comment yesterday. Lisa works in health care and her opinions about my worries were spot on. It is appreciated very much.

Anybody that needs help on the island whether practical or psychological can ask for help. Practical via the municipality (see earlier post) and psychologically please call Faros when you are ill and need help. Non Greek patients that don’t speak Greek are welcome to call too!

Faros the non-profit organization that helps people with cancer and other life threatening illnesses understands that the current events are particularly difficult for the people who belong to so-called “vulnerable groups (chronic patients etc) Faros believes that they must contribute as much as they can to protect and support, the psychological state of the patients.
Patients can call Maria Kafandari (psychologist) on (0030) 6978955539, from 10.00 to 14.00 hours and from 17.00 to 21.00 hours (Monday-Friday)

Telephone numbers for help from the municipality
For the community of Skopelos :
Tel : 2424022834, 6977701070
For the community of Glossa:
Tel:2424033502, 6981219192, 6981733183
For the community of Elios:
Tel:6983717851, 6977161064

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The Greek government has decided today that anybody that wants to come to a Greek island has to prove that he/she is a permanent resident of that island. The measure is from tomorrow, Saturday. Papers showing this have to be shown.

Supermarkets will be open also on Sunday.

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On a lighter note. We have finished the first puzzle of 300 pieces. We have started with one of 1000 pieces last night.
I will keep you updated…

What I describe below is not unique and not a tale of hardship. We are lucky that we have some money saved and have our own home.
I cannot imagine what others who don’t have those advantages are going through. People are being fired because businesses are being closed. Some help from the government is coming their way. The whole world experiences the results of this dangerous virus. It is not the time to start pointing fingers to others about their behavior and habits. This is the time where we need to show how much we really care for each other and try to help out practically in person when needed, via the telephone, the internet etc.

I realize that here on this island we can follow the rules that are needed and at the same time have a sense of freedom because we are surrounded by the nature and we can go into this nature without causing harm to others. We are not confined to flats with only a balcony. Those people are heroes.

As a family we are trying to stay at home as much as possible and not get in contact with other people outside our immediate family (4) We have to go for shopping though but I try to get stuff for a few days and empty the old stack of food that I had in the kitchen. At some point though our car fuel tank was empty and we needed to fill it up. We had to go out.. What I noticed was that in some supermarkets no plastic gloves are available so I bought a box (too late?) I don’t know if it necessary that supermarkets hand them out. Other shops have everything (gloves and gel) in place and only a certain amount of people can enter and shop. On Skopelos no hoarding is visible, only the gels are not to be found.

I try to pay for my shopping with my credit card but at some point I had to go to the ATM for money and I did not have gloves. How do you think I entered my pin without gloves? Who touched that screen before me? axxxxxxx!!!
When I entered the second shop without the shop assistant wearing gloves I became a little paranoid also because my glasses were sliding down my nose and I could not remember if I had shoved them back up with my fingers (and touching my face) Coming home I threw down the shopping and started washing my hands; how and how long do I need to wash my hands I thought, oh yes I sing two times “happy birthday”

Not moving around in town is better for my psychology but we do go out of the house. We drive there with the car and we make sure we go somewhere, a beach, and only if there are none or a few people, we enter and hold a distance. For those who see us, this is how we do it. I think we do not harm anybody this way. If this is forbidden later we are lucky that we have a piece of land where we can be outside.

The Greek government has forbidden for 10 people and more at a time to be together. A fine of 1000 euros will be given to each person. Most hotels will close. Only a few will stay open per city/village to help out in emergencies. Courier businesses and the post offices will stay open to obtain packages.

A friend of mine called me yesterday, she works in a very big supermarket in Athens and up to this weekend they had no protection. Customers could stand only right in front of the till and the employee, whilst paying for their shopping. I feel in awe for everybody who is at the front line in this difficult time. Those who need to work and those that are treating the sick. Maybe this difficult time is a clear sign to pay all these people better.

The municipality of Skopelos is helping people out with a new telephone help line. Use it if you need help. See my other post.

How do you cope? I would love to hear your (funny, maybe) stories

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