EghtesadOnline: An official with Iran’s Health Ministry has called for serious intervention by authorities to curb coronavirus transmissions, as the country’s large cities reported a third wave of infections.
Deputy Health Minister Iraj Harirchi on Tuesday said interventions to stem the spread of the deadly virus should be systematic and any flaw in that system could double the number of deaths in the second year of the epidemic, ISNA reported.
Referring to the World Health Organization’s call for global intervention, the deputy said Iran will continue to “observe safety measures, including facemask wearing, contact tracing and carrying out diagnostic tests” to break the chain of transmission.
Alireza Zali, the head of Tehran’s Coronavirus Taskforce, took one step farther and said “military intervention” is required during epidemics.
“Of course, I do not mean we should treat people violently. But recommendations and suggestions are no longer enough,” Zali said.
There is mounting concern over the concurrence of the H1N1 and Covid-19 epidemics over the next six months. Pointing to a challenging autumn and winter ahead, Harirchi said the country has begun to vaccinate healthcare workers, pregnant women and high-risk groups against influenza.
Despite the delay in importing flu shots, Health Minister Saeed Namaki reassured the public that they are aiming to vaccine one-fifth of the population.
“Some 3,677 people were reported to have contracted Covid-19 on Tuesday, nearly half of whom was hospitalized,” Health Ministry’s Spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari was quoted as saying by ISNA.
The newly confirmed cases of the viral infection took the national tally to 453,600, she added.
Lari noted that over the past 24 hours, 207 Covid-19 patients lost their lives, taking the total toll to 25,986.
According to Lari, Iran has administered 3.98 million coronavirus tests to identify patients. Nearly 379,000 have recovered from the respiratory illness and 4,079 are in critical condition.
The number of patients diagnosed with Covid-19 worldwide surged past 33.5 million on Tuesday while fatalities rose to 1.007 million.