EghtesadOnline: Confirmed coronavirus cases in Iran surged to 2,336, the death toll to 77 and the recovered to 435, which figures are the highest among virus-hit countries outside China, health officials said.
Iran added 835 new cases of the infection on Tuesday, including 11 who have died from the disease, Deputy Health Minister Alireza Raeisi was quoted as saying by ISNA.
According to Financial Tribune, Raeisi explained, "Gilan, Qom and Tehran are the three provinces most affected by the virus."
Central and northern parts of Iran have reported a majority of coronavirus patients.
According to the official, more than 8,000 people have been hospitalized, suspected to have contracted the disease, around 5,000 of whom have been tested until now, and laboratories have confirmed that over 2,000 of them are infected.
Iran also leads in the number of officials who have been affected by the epidemic. Head of Emergency Medical Services Pirhossein Koulivand and a deputy of the Medical Council of Iran, Mohammad Jahangiri, were diagnosed with the COVID-19 illness on Tuesday.
A former advisor to Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif also tested positive.
More than 20 parliament members are infected. Deputy Health Minister Iraj Harirchi was informed last week that he had contracted the illness. A staff member of the World Health Organization in Iran has also been infected.
Vice President Masoumeh Ebtekar, a Tehran district mayor, Morteza Rahmanzadeh, former interior minister, Mostafa Pourmohammadi, and a member of the Expediency Council, Mohammad Mirmohammadi, are among those who have been diagnosed with the acute respiratory illness. Mirmohammadi died on Monday.
Iran has been disinfecting public areas in the past few days and it has asked people to restrict travels inside and outside cities. Some of the provinces, which are considered tourist destinations, have set up checkpoints to screen incoming travelers.
Britain, Germany and France have offered Iran a package of "both material and financial support" to help the country contain the contagion, read the statement.
The European countries have pledged to offer Iran financial support close to $5.6 million via WHO, or other United Nations agencies.
The three countries also sent equipment, including test kits, protective body suits and gloves to Tehran on March 2.
Zarif thanked on Twitter WHO and countries that have assisted Iran during the outbreak and provided a list of needed medical items, to which China's Ambassador to Iran replied, "More aid from China will arrive soon."
Following Chang Hua's tweet, China announced it has sent its third batch of emergency medical supplies from Shanghai to Tehran on board a Mahan Air cargo flight on Monday night.
The supplies include bodysuits, laboratory tests and equipment that measure oxygen levels in the blood. WHO laboratory test kits, which arrived on Monday, can diagnose almost 100,000 people.
The respiratory pathogen has spread to more than 60 countries.