On Wednesday, indications continued that the fifth wave of coronavirus infections in Israel, which was brought on by the Omicron variant, is waning, as key metrics saw a decline. According to an official of the Health Ministry, even though the current wave of infections was receding, it would take several weeks for it to abate fully. Another unnamed official also said on Wednesday that it was important to note that this wave would certainly not be the last one and the country should be ready for a sixth wave because a more lethal mutation of the coronavirus cannot be ruled out completely.
The data from the Health Ministry showed that the number of new cases that were diagnosed on Tuesday was around 37,559. This brought the total number of active cases in Israel to 320,470. The number of cases that were conducted on Tuesday was around 154,878 and this meant that the positivity rate was about 24.25%. The highest positivity rate in Israel since the beginning of the pandemic is about 28.79% and this was seen on Saturday. As far as serious patients are concerned, this number has continued to decline gradually over the last few days.
The number of serious cases on Wednesday was about 1,161 and the highest number of serious cases since the beginning of the pandemic was recorded on Sunday at 1,263. Of the total number of people hospitalized due to serious condition, there were about 273 patients who were on ventilators. According to the Health Ministry, the serious cases are more common amongst unvaccinated individuals. Statistics showed that 415.6 serious cases can be found in every 100,000 people in unvaccinated people aged 60 and above. Meanwhile, only 35.9 cases per 100,000 people are recorded in vaccinated individuals. The total number of people hospitalized because of COVID-19 was about 2,614.
Of this number, there were around 350 people who were in critical condition, as per the data provided by the Health Ministry. The transmission rate, or the ‘R’ number, which indicates the number of people that can be infected by a carrier, has also continued its decline. It has now reached 0.79, which is the lowest it has been since October. This number had gone up to 2.12 in December but has been on a decline since then. The death toll also increased by 19 on Tuesday and reached 9,303. The data from the Health Ministry shows that about 219 people lost their lives to COVID-19 in the previous week.
In the current year, the deadliest month for the coronavirus had been January and overall third deadliest, as 686 deaths had been recorded. Higher death tolls had been recorded last year in January and February, where the numbers stood at 1,459 and 935, respectively. The IDF also made an announcement on Wednesday about administering the fourth dose of the coronavirus vaccine to military personnel. Anyone who is over 18 and serving in the military, having received their third dose four months ago can now get the fourth one.