The presidential elections have begun. The first to vote are the people isolated with COVID

People who are isolated due to the COVID-19 disease can vote for the next president of the republic on Wednesday. They can vote from their cars between 08:00 and 17:00 at polling stations in five locations in Prague and one in each of the districts.

According to the Health Ministry, 2,687 people, including children, have tested positive for the coronavirus in the past seven days.

Voters who have been certified by a doctor or the regional health station that they are in isolation because of a coronavirus will be able to vote from their cars at the designated locations. Voters can also vote if they present a credible paper or electronic receipt of a positive coronavirus test result or complete and sign an affidavit in front of the polling station stating that they are in isolation.

Isolation shall be ordered by a physician or hygienist according to the applicable rules after a positive test for COVID-19 and be in effect for at least seven days or two days after the end of symptoms. Quarantines of people at risk have not been used since February last year, yet the Home Office provides them in the election rules.

According to data from the Czech Social Security Administration (CSSA), 621 people had e-disability cards issued for COVID as of Wednesday, January 4—mainly in Prague (398), with only one or two in five regions. In reality, however, more people are living in isolation; doctors do not issue sick leave, for example, to the elderly or entrepreneurs and merchants. Even people who could work from home during illness do not have to apply for it.

According to the Ministry of Health, the Hradec Králové Region has the highest sickness rate of any region, with 47.2 people out of every 100,000 testings positive in the last seven days. Of the districts, Hradec Králové (74.2), Jičín (48.7), Česká Lípa (47.6), Trutnov (43.4), and Bruntál (40.7) were the most affected.

Voters must prove their identity, including their residence, to the Commission by presenting their ID card or passport. If necessary, the Commission will verify the permanent residence address through the regional authority in the primary population register.

Voters who wish to vote with a voter card must surrender it to the Commission, which will attach it to the list of voters who have voted. These lists are then obtained by law through the county and municipal offices by the precinct election commissions, overseeing the voting on Friday and Saturday. This will prevent the same voter from voting more than once.

While people with COVID-19 disease will only be able to vote for president from their cars on Wednesday, people with coronavirus will be able to vote in a portable ballot box on Friday, January 13, from 08:00 to 22:00 or Saturday, January 14, from 08:00 to 14:00. They must request this method of voting from the local, regional authority or Prague City Hall no later than 20:00 on Thursday, January 12. In facilities that have been closed due to the coronavirus, their clients will vote on Thursday from 08:00 to 22:00 and on Friday from 08:00 to 18:00.