N.Y Time: July 14, 2024 4:53 am

Israel sees end to pandemic as cases continue to decrease

Israel sees end to pandemic as cases continue to decrease

Coronavirus numbers continued to improve on Wednesday, weeks after the country started to significantly ease restrictions, suggesting that Israel might be really ready to leave the pandemic behind.
Only 679 new coronavirus cases were reported on Tuesday, according to a Wednesday morning report by the Health Ministry, less than half compared to a week before, when some 1,563 newly infected people were identified, and less than a quarter than the week before then, when the cases were 3,120.
The number of daily cases is not the only index that is experiencing a dramatic decrease. The rate of tests returning a positive result has been steadily under 2% for days, while the R rate – or reproduction rate – measuring how many people each virus carrier infects on average – stood at 0.59, the lowest in months. When the R rate is below 0.8, the disease is deemed to be receding.
In addition, the number of patients in serious condition stood at 500 on Wednesday. They were 573 a week earlier and 673 two weeks earlier. In the past, health officials suggested that Israel’s health system could handle some 800 serious patients without compromising the quality of the care. At the peak of the third wave in the country in January there were more than 1,200 people seriously ill.
Election Day also offered proof of how fast the situation is improving. The authorities were ready to handle some 12,000 infected eligible voters, and another 39,000 in isolation, but they ended up being some 6,700 and 22,000, respectively.
“We made sure that everyone who wanted to vote would be able to do so,” Health Minister Yuli Edelstein said Tuesday while visiting a special corona polling station. “I’m happy that there are not so many voters here because there are not many sick people in general.”
Experts and authorities agree that the success of the vaccination campaign has been the key to tame the virus.