Eesti in brief

  • 2013-08-07

On average, almost every 5th Estonian inhabitant was hospitalized last year; children made up 12 percent of all hospitalized people, reports Public Broadcasting. The number of days spent in a hospital was around 1.5 per 10 Estonian inhabitants, which is by 3 percentage points more than in 2011. In 2012, 1.87 million stationary hospital stay days were registered for all Estonian hospitals; on average, a hospitalized person spent 8 days in a hospital, just like in 2011. There were 60 hospitals operating n Estonia at the end of 2012, of which 3 were regional, 4 central, 11 general, 4 local, 3 rehabilitation treatment, 9 specialized and 26 long-term care hospitals.

The Finance Ministry would like to expand restrictions on classic lottery games as playing lotteries has become very popular in Estonia, reports Postimees. The Finance Ministry sent a bill with amendments to the gambling law to a round of approvals in June, in which they propose to start identifying people who buy lottery tickets and participate in prediction games like sports betting. Identifying persons is necessary so that people who have registered themselves on a voluntary list of people, and who are forbidden to play gambling games, couldn’t play classic lottery and prediction games. The ministry also wants to make it obligatory for people to set an upper limit of losses in online gambling. Over 3,000 people have registered on the list of persons who have restrictions on gambling since the list was created in 2009 to help people cope with their gambling addiction. A person who is registered there cannot gamble at gambling operators registered in Estonia. Several international betting organizers have reached Estonia and over 21 million euros was spent on these games last year; the ministry thinks that the list should be expanded to include prediction games. Estonian state-owned lottery organizer Eesti Loto’s board chairman Heiki Kranich said that the law amendment would mean major investments for them and would make the sale more complicated, which would result in a fall of sales, although he understands the ministry’s position since lottery games are also gambling.

Despite the temporary closing of U.S. representations in Islamic countries due to terrorist threats, Estonia’s embassy in Cairo continues work as usual, reports Delfi. The Foreign Ministry informed Delfi that people traveling in the Middle-East, North Africa and the states of the Arab peninsula should be extremely cautious. The ministry is watching the developments of the situation and danger evaluations and makes further decisions as needed. The ministry said that when being on a trip, people should consider all cautionary measures, limit being in places where there are a lot of people and avoid places where protest events take place. The ministry’s homepage includes updated travel warnings and recommends avoid traveling to some states altogether, while in some countries the caution concerns some regions.