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EghtesadOnline: The fifth wave of the Covid-19 pandemic took the tally of daily cases to over 16,000 on Monday as fatalities from the disease neared the 85,000 mark.

The number of newly identified infections spiked to 16,000, up by some 30%, compared to last week, as the Delta variant of the coronavirus spread throughout the country, ISNA reported.

Health officials have sounded the alarm over the jump in cases and hospitalizations triggered by the mutated virus and reimposed restrictions to curb transmissions. 

Some 92 cities in Iran have been placed on red alert and 183 more are color-coded as orange, indicating high-risk zones. 

The highly contagious Delta variant was first found in India in late 2020 and has since spread to at least 98 nations, sparking fears of a resurgence despite vaccinations.

More than 4.47 million Iranians have received a first dose of a coronavirus vaccine and only a little over one million people have been fully vaccinated, bringing the total number of shots administered to 6.476 million.

Health authorities had warned in the early days of spring that the Delta variant could enter the country through southern and southeast provinces. 

Despite warnings, the southeastern province of Sistan-Baluchestan is facing a catastrophe as more and more people showing symptoms of Covid-19 are hospitalized.

The Iranian Red Crescent Society, along with other organizations, have directed resources to the outbreak-stricken region to contain the contagion. 

The Health Ministry on Monday logged a single-day rise of 157 deaths, taking the total toll to nearly 85,000. Some 3,255 patients are hospitalized in ICU units, in critical condition. 

Worldwide Covid-19 cases soared to 184.6 million as fatalities caused by the outbreak rose to 3.995 million. According to the World Health Organization, the world is in a “very dangerous period”.


death toll infections COVID