EghtesadOnline: President Hassan Rouhani on Saturday announced a ban on travel to areas with high coronavirus transmission rates during the fast approaching Iranian New Year holidays (starting March 21) to stem the spread of a fourth wave of infections.
“Travel to cities coded orange and red are prohibited. Do not plan to travel to those regions,” Rouhani said in the weekly meeting of the National Coronavirus Headquarters, President.ir reported.
Crowds of holiday shoppers are preparing for the 13-day Iranian New Year holidays, fanning fears that a fourth wave of the disease will be triggered.
“The country’s healthcare system has a limit … I’m asking people not to take trips for the sake of their own safety,” the president warned.
Based on the extent of transmission rates, the government color-codes regions as blue, the safest category, and yellow, orange and red, which marks the highest-risk areas.
A total of 43 cities are currently coded orange and red, but their number will most likely increase over the next two weeks. Health officials update the status of cities every week.
Rouhani concluded by saying, “The public should maintain last year’s lifestyle for another year.”
Iran says it will vaccinate enough people by the end of 2021 to reach herd immunity.
Officials reported the deaths of 82 patients on Saturday, the spokeswoman for the Health Ministry, Sima Sadat Lari, said, adding that the new deaths have taken the national toll to 60,594.
She noted that at least 8,200 more Iranians contracted Covid-19 within 24 hours, taking the total tally of cases to 1.681 million.
More than 1.43 million have recovered from the infectious disease and some 3,790 remain in ICU units, Lari said.
“Iran has administered 11.2 million diagnostic tests since the start of the outbreak.”
Covid-19 cases across the world rose to 116.7 million on Saturday and fatalities increased to 2.59 million.