Number of serious patients rises again, hospital strike goes on – The Jerusalem Post

The third coronavirus vaccine was opened to all Israelis who have been fully inoculated for at least five months, Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz announced Sunday. In addition, those who receive the booster are going to be exempt from isolation when they enter the country from abroad.
In a press conference with the ministry’s Director-General Prof. Nachman Ash, Coronavirus Commissioner Prof. Salman Zarka, and Public Health Services head Dr. Sharon Alroy-Preis, it was announced that from October 1, only those who have been vaccinated twice for less than five months, who have received a booster, who have recovered for less than six months, or who have recovered and received one shot will be eligible for the green pass – which grants access to several activities and venues.
Alroy-Preis stressed that according to the data the ministry have gathered, those who received a booster are ten times more protected from infection an serious symptoms compared to those who just got two doses.

A TEL AVIV crosswalk this week, with a mix of masked and unmasked pedestrians. (credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)A TEL AVIV crosswalk this week, with a mix of masked and unmasked pedestrians. (credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
The officials stressed that they are seeing encouraging signs that suggest that the outbreak is slowing down as an effect of the third shot.
According to Ash, on Sunday Israel hit the two million people jabbed with it.
In the past week, Israel administered over 100,000 shots per day on weekdays, mostly boosters, but also first and second doses.
So far, some 5.95 million Israelis have received at least one shot, 5.46m. at least two.
The number of serious coronavirus patients in Israel slightly increased again on Sunday, after last week, the number of patients in serious conditions because of COVID-19 fluctuated between 680 and 700; on Sunday morning Israel had some 726 such patients, the highest since March.
While on Saturday the number of tests administered is lower than on weekdays – around 100,000 compared to 150,000 – the rate of people screening positive, over 7%, also marked a six-month record.
Some 7,071 cases were registered on Saturday. There are currently over 80,000 in the country – not far from the peak of the third wave when Israel recorded as many as 88,000 active cases. Just three days before schools are set to open again, 34,000 of the active cases are schoolchildren and another 90,000 of them are in isolation after been exposed to a verified patient.
At the same time, the reproduction rate, or R – which measures how many people each virus carrier infects on average – has been declining, dropping to as low as 1.11. An R over 1 still indicates that the disease is spreading, but at a slower pace than in the past weeks.
Experts hope that the outbreak will start declining soon.
Meanwhile on Sunday, hundreds of health care workers gathered in front of the Health Ministry in Jerusalem to protest over the lack of funding.
Seven public hospitals, including Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center and Hadassah-University Medical Center, stopped receiving coronavirus patients last Monday and have been operating in emergency mode since Wednesday – only admitting patients in need of life-saving treatment – because of a prolonged financial crisis.
So-called public hospitals are independent organizations that rely mostly on donations, as opposed to facilities directly owned and funded by the state or the health funds.
The public hospitals said they have received only NIS 400 million of NIS 630m. that was promised to them to cover costs between January and June. An additional NIS 55m. per month that they were supposed to receive in July and August has also not been forthcoming.
Officials from the Health and Finance ministries said they have been monitoring the crisis closely and are committed to resolving it quickly, but so far have failed to deliver any solution.
The public hospitals, which also include Ma’aynei Hayeshua Medical Center in Bnei Brak, Laniado Medical Center in Netanya and three small hospitals in Nazareth, are all located in cities classified as red or orange by the Coronavirus Traffic Light System.
Maayan Jaffe-Hoffman contributed to this report.

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Number of serious patients rises again, hospital strike goes on – The Jerusalem Post

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