Three days into lockdown, Covid-19 still spreading rapidly

Coronavirus test / Photo: Reuters

Fewer tests have been carried out in Israel because of the Rosh Hashanah holiday, but the proportion of positive results is high.

2,565 people in Israel were confirmed infected with the Covid-19 coronavirus yesterday. Because of the Rosh Hashanah holiday, the number of tests carried out was fairly low, but the proportion of positive test results was high, amounting to 11%, indicating a high rate of undetected infection. Altogether, according to the official figures, 51,180 people in Israel are currently ill with the coronavirus.

The number of coronavirus patients hospitalized in severe condition remains high: 643 people, with another 241 people hospitalized in moderately severe condition. Altogether, 1,295 people are hospitalized with the disease, but the vast majority of patients are being treated at home. Hospital medical teams are having to cope with a growing shortage of manpower: 3,157 medical personnel are currently in isolation at home after being exposed to a coronavirus patient, and more than 1,000 have been confirmed as being infected with the disease.

A report by the Information and Knowledge Center monitoring infection trends in Israel shows that since early September the pandemic has been spreading rapidly, at a rate of increase of 5% daily. The rise is across all sections of the population, but is particularly marked in the haredi (ultra-Orthodox Jewish) community. The low number of tests among the Arab population recently makes it difficult to obtain a reliable picture of how the coronavirus is spreading among it.

The number of new coronavirus cases in Israel is among the highest in the world in relation to population size, and the number of positive test results is also very high in comparison with most countries. In some hospitals, coronavirus wards are almost fully occupied, and new wards are being made available at the expense of other hospital departments.

According to the Information and Knowledge Center, it is too early to estimate the effect of the lockdowns (local lockdowns imposed earlier this month and now a full lockdown on the whole of Israel) on the rate of infection. The Center does however point to a lack of enforcement and support in local authorities and settlements designated "red zones".

Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on September 21, 2020

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2020

Coronavirus test / Photo: Reuters
Coronavirus test / Photo: Reuters
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