Iran's COVID-19 death toll rises by 76 to 5,650 amid fears of 'fresh outbreak'
EghtesadOnline: Iran's death toll from COVID-19 rose by 76 during the last 24 hours to reach a total of 5,650, a Health Ministry spokesman said on state TV on Saturday (Apr 25).
The total number of people diagnosed with the virus is 89,328, of whom 3,096 are in a critical condition, the spokesman Kianush Jahanpur said.
Deputy Health Minister Iraj Harirchi said the country's daily death tally had fallen by about 70 per cent from its peak, while the number of COVID-19 patients in hospital had fallen by about half.
FEARS OF "FRESH OUTBREAK"
Saturday's numbers come as health officials in Iran raise fears of a "fresh outbreak" of COVID-19 cases in the country.
The spread of the disease has slowed since the start of April, but Alireza Zali, the anti-COVID-19 coordinator for the capital, on Saturday criticised "hasty reopenings".
They could "create new waves of sickness in Tehran and complicate efforts to bring the epidemic under control", he said, quoted by the official news agency IRNA.
Health ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour said that social distancing and hygiene measures to guard against the spread of COVID-19 needed to remain in place.
The ministry's infectious diseases department head, Mohammad Mehdi Gouya, warned of "signs of a fresh outbreak" in provinces such as Gilan and Mazandaran in the north and Qom in central Iran "where we made great efforts to control the epidemic".
Iran, already weakened by tough US sanctions, has struggled to contain the virus outbreak since reporting its first cases on Feb 19 - two deaths in the Shiite holy city of Qom.