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Israel shortens quarantine for COVID patients; Coronavirus czar threatens lockdown

The country sets another record: 134,000 official active cases – the highest number since the beginning of the pandemic

Coronavirus czar Salman Zarka attends a press conference about the coronavirus in Jerusalem, August 29, 2021. (Photo: Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90)

Israel is going to shorten the quarantine for people infected with COVID-19 from 10 days to seven days, the Pandemic Response Committee recommended tonight as the number of infections surges upwards sending thousands of citizens into quarantine.

This decision came today as Israel passed the 21,000-mark in new infections in one day – not including an unofficial 10,000 positive results from home antigen tests.

Will this send Israel into a lockdown? Coronavirus czar Salman Zarka said that if Israel reaches 600 serious patients, a lockdown might be necessary.

“Based on our experience of previous waves and some academic studies, when there are more than 600 patients in serious condition, the quality of healthcare cannot be the same,” he said today. “It is very important that we do not reach such numbers. If we do, we might need to raise a red flag and recommend the government take more significant limitations on the economy and even a lockdown.”

Currently, 221 patients are hospitalized in serious condition, an increase of 16 in one day. The highest number of patients in serious condition was 1,200.

Health Ministry Director-General Nachman Ash gave a more liberal number of 1,500 patients in serious condition before such measures would be necessary.

The country set another record: 134,000 official active cases – the highest number since the beginning of the pandemic.

Nevertheless, Israel’s borders opened to tourists yesterday and the Green Passport was canceled at stores at indoor malls today – but not at food courts and restaurants where it will still be required.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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