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COVID: Bennett meets with health officials as cases surge past 6,000

CM 10/08/2021

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Prime Minister Naftali Bennett met with health officials on Tuesday afternoon to assess the situation after Israel registered over 6,000 cases on the previous day, marking the highest number since the peak of the pandemic in February and an increase of some 2,500 cases compared to the previous fourth wave record of around 3,850 new virus carriers last week.
Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz, the ministry’s Director General Prof. Nachman Ash, Head of Public Health Services Dr. Sharon Alroy Price, Coronavirus Commissioner Prof. Salman Zarka as well as representative of the Finance Ministry attended the meeting.
Later in the evening, Bennett was scheduled to discuss the issue of strengthening the health system, according to a statement ahead of the meeting, adding that if necessary the coronavirus cabinet could be convened afterwards.
“We are at a critical point for all of us, for health, life and the economy,” Zarka said in an interview to Radio Kan Bet earlier in the day.

Some 6,275 cases were registered on Monday, with almost 5% of the 130,000 people screened testing positive – also the highest in five months.
The number of serious patients continued to increase, standing at 394 as of Tuesday morning. A week earlier they were 232. Of them, some 64 are currently on ventilators.
According to Tuesday’s update by the Health Ministry, some 16 people died on Sunday, making it the deadliest day since the beginning of April.
While the figure is still much lower than what was happening at the peak of the third wave, when at times dozens of people were killed by COVID over the course of 24 hours, it still represents a dramatic increase compared to a few weeks ago. In the whole month of June, some seven people succumbed to COVID, the August death toll already stands at 82.
Since the beginning of the pandemic a total of 6,559 people have died.
Government and health officials are hoping that a significant improvement will be brought about by the third vaccine offered to Israelis over 60, to reinforce their immunization.
Since the new campaign was launched on Friday, some 600,000 people have already been inoculated.
Zarka also said that there is an improvement in the vaccination of over one million eligible Israelis who have not been jabbed at all.
“There is a shift,” he said noting the ministry’s efforts in cooperation with local authorities, health funds and other relevant entities.
In order to contain the outbreak, the ministry is considering recommending bringing back the Purple Ribbon outline and some caps on gatherings.

Source: Jerusalem Post

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