Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban announced Monday the government will impose a partial lockdown in an attempt to slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic following a dramatic surge in hospitalizations and deaths.
In a video posted to his Facebook account, Orban said, effective Wednesday, a nationwide general curfew will be imposed between 8 p.m. and 5 a.m. with an exception for those commuting to work. Businesses will be required to close by 7 p.m., restaurants will be limited to home delivery, sporting events will be held in empty stadiums, and family gatherings will be limited to 10 people.
Universities and high schools will make the transition to digital education, while preschools, kindergartens and classes for children 14 and under will remain open. Health care workers, teachers and childcare workers will be tested weekly for the virus, according to the statement.
Orban said the new restrictions will remain in place for 30 days, after which they may be extended. Parliament is expected to pass a measure Tuesday to enact a state of emergency for 90 days.
The raft of measures comes after a week of record-breaking hospitalizations and deaths.
The European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) reports that, as of Monday, Hungary had the third-highest death rate per million (10.4) in Europe over the past two weeks — behind the Czech Republic and Belgium.  
More than 5,000 new infections were recorded Monday, with 6,061 coronavirus patients in the hospital, including 415 on ventilators, according to officials. Meanwhile, the Johns Hopkins University’s coronavirus database indicates that currently Hungary has more than 109,610 infections and 2,430 deaths.

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