Dozens of Israeli towns and neighborhoods could be placed under lockdown soon, if present trends in the coronavirus pandemic continue, health officials warn.
Seven-hundred-and-seventy-three new cases of the coronavirus were reported on Tuesday, the largest number since the pandemic started, with a further 162 cases reported Wednesday morning.
While the increase in the daily infection rate was fueled largely by the surge in the number of tests carried out – with 20,018 tests administered yesterday – the percentage of positive tests also increased, rising to 3.9% Tuesday.
The total number of infections since the pandemic began now stands at 25,547.
Of those, 7,838 cases are currently active, with 17,389 patients recovering from the virus, and 320 coronavirus-related fatalities.
Despite the surge in confirmed cases, the hospitalization rate remains stable, with 234 hospitalizations, compared to 7,604 patients who remain in home quarantine or in coronavirus hotels.
Of the 7,838 active cases, 56 are serious, with a further 59 patients in moderate condition. Twenty-four patients are on ventilators.
The largest number of new cases have been reported in Jerusalem, with 180 new infections confirmed over the past three days, compared to 150 new cases in Ashdod, 135 in Bnei Brak, 96 in Tel Aviv-Jaffa, 55 in Dimona, 43 in Bat Yam, and 16 in Kiryat Gat.
The Health Ministry has decided to recommend cities and neighborhoods with high infections rates be placed under lockdown, including Dimona, Kiryat Gat, Ashdod, and Ramle. In total, the Health Ministry estimates that dozens of towns and neighborhoods could be placed under lockdown.