Worrying rise in tick infection rates
By October 7, the number of people infected with tick-borne encephalitis in Latvia this year has increased by 6.8 percent as compared to 2018, according to the Center for Disease Prevention and Control.
Ambulance crews to shrink in future due to staff shortages
A gradual transition from three-person to two-person ambulance crews by 2026 is one of the solutions proposed in the pre-hospital emergency medical service strategy 2020, Liene Cipule, director of the Emergency Medical Service (NMPD), said at a news conference August 28, reported the LETA newswire.
Doctors' numbers decline
Latvia continues to see a drop in the number of medics working in the country, falling its lowest level in the past six years, according to statistics from the Center for Disease Prevention and Control cited by the LETA newswire August 24.
Health Minister says hospitals will not be shut down
Hospitals in Latvia will not be closed, but from now they will be able to provide only the services that are of sufficient quality, said Health Minister Ilze Viņķele in an interview with Dienas Bizness on July 31.
Tick activity levels similar to last year
Tick activity levels are slightly higher than last year. Individual cases of ehrlichiosis, however, are lower, according to epidemiologist at the Center for Disease prevention and Control Antra Bormane, reported LSM's Latvian service on July 10.
Children with autism and Down's syndrome taught sign language
Children with autism, Down's syndrome and other developmental disorders have begun acquiring sign language, which allows nonverbal or minimally verbal children to communicate more effectively with their families, reported Latvian Television on July 6. The Latvian Portage Association offers sign language teaching services as part of their early correction program.
Young doctors: main motive for working abroad is higher salaries
The concerns medics have been bringing up for many years have now been confirmed by the State Audit Office. More than half of doctors and nurses are above the age of 50, and the anticipated generational replacement is occurring at a slow rate. Only 65% of new doctors stay in the country after finishing their state-funded studies. Two young doctors from Rīga Stradiņš University admit that the main motivation for leaving is the salary, reported LSM's Latvian service on July 3.

Resident doctor Kārlis Rācenis and resident neurologist Ieva Glāzere are on round the clock duty at the Pauls Stradiņš Clinical University Hospital. This is one of the ways for them to earn their residency salary – 820 euros per month.
Kariņš proposes to reduce the number of hospitals
When talking about arranging and reducing the number of schools in the country, the number of hospitals should also be mentioned, said the Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš (New Unity) in an interview on Latvian Television on July 4. 
The dark side of Midsummer 2019 – one dead, 50 drunk drivers, and nearly 300 injured
Every emergency service appraises this year's Līgo night differently. The State Fire and Rescue Service (VUGD) notes that this year's festival was relatively peaceful. The view is also shared by the State Police, despite its investigation into the case of a person who was run over near Carnikava. The Emergency Medical Care Services (NMPD), however, has had a tough night, reported LSM's Latvian service on June 24.
Traffic-related death rate has increased by 20% since last year
The number of people who died in car crashes has increased by 20% since 2018, said Normunds Krapsis, the head of the State Police Traffic Safety Administration in an interview with Latvian Television on June 21.

Krapsis emphasized that there will be an increased number of policemen patrolling the roads on Jāņi in an effort to discourage “madmen behind the wheel”. The police urges the public not to be reckless – to get a good night's sleep after the festival or choose driver's who are sober. “As we do every year, we'll increase road policing. There'll be mass checks and raids,” said Krapsis.
Authorities advise against swimming at Lucavsala and Pasta sala
After conducting bathing water quality tests last week, the Health Inspectorate does not recommend swimming in the “Lucavsala” bathing area of the Daugava river, Rīga, and the “Pasta salas peldvieta” on the left shore of Lielupe, where a high level of microbiological contamination has been detected, reported LSM's Latvian service on June 17.
Two-tier health insurance system put on hold
The two-package national health insurance system, which was set up and intended to be implemented by the previous administration, is postponed until 2021 – the Saeima decided at the final reading on June 13. Until then, it is planned to launch a one package system and set a health insurance contribution of 1% for every wage-earner.
Tonsillitis on the rise due to heat
The drastic fluctuations in temperature, from the swelter in the streets to the cool air indoors, have increased cases of pharyngal inflammation, some of which require serious medical treatment, the LSM Latvian service's reported on June 12.