coronavirus, Covid-19, Delta Variant, Ein Kerem, Hadassah Hospital, Hadassah Medical Centre, Hadassah Medical Organisation, Infectious Disease, Israel, Jerusalem, Lockdown, Naftali Bennett, Nitzan Horowitz, Pandemic, Reproduction Rate, vaccine, virus
Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz tells Army Radio that another lockdown is a “possibility.” As number of serious cases continues to rise, Hadassah Medical Centre reopens COVID unit.
Prime Minister Naftali Bennett convened a meeting on Sunday devoted to more stringent enforcement of COVID-19 regulations in light of a spike in the number of new cases and patients in serious condition.
Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz, Public Security Minister Omer Bar-lev, Israel Police Commissioner Kobi Shabtai, and Attorney-General Avichai Mendelblit all participated in the meeting.
Earlier Sunday, Horowitz told Army Radio that Israel might be facing yet another nationwide lockdown to tamp out the current outbreak.
“Certainly, it’s a possibility, but we aren’t talking about that right now. Everyone can understand that if there’s a huge outbreak and many seriously ill, that’s where we’ll wind up. We are taking steps now so we don’t have to go there,” the health minister said.
“Without a doubt, we are seeing an outbreak of the Delta variant, and that requires us to follow instructions more stringently,” he added. “The entire purpose of the steps we’re taking is so we don’t have to instate harsher restrictions, which will have very serious results.”
Meanwhile, the number of COVID patients hospitalised in serious condition continues to rise, jumping from 52 on Friday to 63 on Sunday, the Health Ministry reported.
Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Centre reopened a COVID-19 unit on Saturday, weeks after shutting down its COVID-19 care units at the end of the third wave. Three patients on the unit are listed in serious condition, including one child.
- COVID-19 tests processed on Saturday identified 430 new cases, with a reproduction rate of 1.47. On Friday, there were 1,118 new cases reported.
- As of Sunday morning, there were 6,622 active or symptomatic cases in Israel, with 94 identified after midnight between Saturday and Sunday.
- A total of 124 COVID-19 patients were hospitalised, including 18 in critical condition, of whom 16 were on ventilators.
- Israel’s COVID-19 death toll since the pandemic hit the country in early 2020 stands at 6,448.
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