The Health Ministry in the State of Israel reported a total of 148 new cases of the novel coronavirus on Wednesday. This is the highest increase in the number of cases recorded in a day since the month of May. The rise in infections is being attributed primarily to the delta variant, which is making its way throughout the country.
As per the traffic light system devised earlier by the relevant authorities of the government, the city of Binyamina, located in the north of the country, has been declared red. This means that the infection rate is relatively high in the region, amid the rising cases across the country.
The Director-General of the Health Ministry, Prof. Chezy Levy, came on the radio to talk about the current situation. He stated that the ministry will be investigating the matter to come up with a complete breakdown of these numbers. Consequently, the relevant authorities will analyze the diagnosis and find the number of people returning from abroad, as well as children who are unvaccinated. He cautioned people to be more careful as the infections continue to rise.
On Thursday, the medical director of Pfizer in the State of Israel, Alon Rappaport, stated that the vaccine made jointly by BioNTech, and Pfizer has shown a high efficacy rate against the new variant. He went on to say that the company collected data through thorough research, which is still ongoing in their labs. Moreover, the data accumulated comes from even those regions where the delta variant from India, has taken the place of the British variant, as the most occurring variant.
According to the medical director, when the vaccine was used against this variant, it showed an efficacy rate of nearly 90%. Following his statement, a spokesperson for Pfizer was asked to provide further details but, she did not comment right away.
On Wednesday, however, she informed that data is being collected on the delta variant, as it has only recently surfaced in the country. Around 200 cases as yet have been reported in Israel.
Due to the rising number of cases in the country, on account of the delta variant, the relevant authorities have decided to postpone allowing in tourists. Initially, the date for foreigners to begin entering the country was decided for July but, it was delayed until August. In addition, municipal inspectors have been strictly instructed to help enforce regulations of quarantine.
Levy also stated that anyone who had come into contact with an individual diagnosed with the dangerous variant, could be ordered to quarantine, even if they were previously inoculated. Moreover, masks will soon be made mandatory in medical facilities, and at border crossings and airports.
The Health Ministry added that people should start wearing masks indoors. According to Naftali Bennett, the Prime Minister, masks will soon be made mandatory inside too if the infections continue to rise at the same rate.