Survey: Health disaster among homeless prevented

A mass health catastrophe among Hungary's homeless has been prevented over the past twelve months of the coronavirus pandemic due to timely measures introduced by shelters, the president of the Menhely Foundation's board said on Wednesday.

“At the same time, we have witnessed an existential disaster during the period,” Peter Gyori, who headed a national survey conducted on Feb. 3, told an online press conference.

The income of 42 percent of the working-age homeless surveyed has decreased, and almost half of those have lost their form of employment, Gyori said, noting that the proportion of homeless without any form of income has almost doubled.

“These circumstances have hindered 20-30 percent of respondents in catering for their essential needs, namely food, clothing and medicine purchases,” he said.

The survey this year covered 1,500 volunteer respondents living in public spaces and 5,200 in homeless shelters across the country.

The survey showed that the majority of homeless are well informed about the symptoms of Covid-19, Gyori said.

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