Poland’s President has become the latest world leader to test positive for coronavirus.
Andrzej Duda is said to be feeling well, with his diagnosis coming amid a surge of Covid-19 deaths and cases in the country.
The President’s spokesman, Blazej Spychalski, said on Twitter that the 48-year-old conservative leader had received the result after taking a test on Friday.
Poland was not badly hit by the pandemic in the spring, but now there are fears that the country’s health system could be pushed to breaking point by the huge surge in confirmed cases. Doctors say patients are now dying not only from Covid-19, but from other illnesses that overwhelmed hospitals are not able to treat at the moment.
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The government is preparing to open field hospitals, but it is not clear where it will find the doctors and nurses to staff them all.
On Friday, Mr Dudda visited the National Stadium in Warsaw, which is being transformed into one of the field hospitals.
He also met Iga Swiatek, the 19-year-old Polish tennis player who won the French Open earlier this month.
Ms Swiatek said she and others on her team have no symptoms but would go into quarantine. She added they are tested regularly and would be tested again in three days.
There are few other details about Mr Duda’s health.
His diagnosis comes in the same month as US President Donald Trump tested positive for Covid-19.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson also contracted the virus during Britain’s first wave.
The Polish government imposed new restrictions on Saturday that are just short of a lockdown in hopes of bringing the country’s outbreak under control.
Prime minister Mateusz Morawiecki has appealed to Poles to strictly observe the ‘serious restrictions’ in order to protect lives.
His plea came as the nation of 38 million hit another daily record of new infections – more than 13,600, with 153 new deaths.
Overall, Poland has recorded 4,172 virus-related deaths during the pandemic.
Mr Duda’s key constitutional roles include guiding foreign policy and signing legislation. But most of the key responsibilities fall to Mr Morawiecki and his cabinet.
The news also comes amid violent protests against the restrictions and strict new anti-abortion laws.
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