EghtesadOnline: President Ebrahim Raisi on Saturday highlighted the significance of following Covid-19 safety measures over the upcoming new year holidays when families gather in enclosed spaces and trips spike.
“Although we were able to defeat the sixth wave, it’s necessary to rigorously observe rules and health protocols,” the president was quoted as saying by his website.
The sixth wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, driven by the highly contagious Omicron variant, increased infection rates to nearly all-time highs before subsiding in the past few weeks.
During Saturday’s National Coronavirus Headquarters meeting, the president said that the NCH’s top priority is to encourage people to get a third booster shot to further build immunity.
“Since a significant portion of the society have not received the third dose, the headquarters bases holiday trip permissions on two Covid-19 vaccine doses,” the top official said.
As per the new decisions, all individuals who have received the first two vaccine doses are allowed to travel across the country during holidays, starting on March 17.
Raisi stressed that schools and universities need to hold in-person classes considering the drop in cases and hospitalizations.
“University and school students make the future of a country, no society can ignore the education quality of its future generation,” the president pointed out.
Over the past 24 hours, 2,200 new cases of the coronavirus were identified in the country and 120 patients died from the infectious disease.
Some 26% of Iran’s population of 85 million people have not received a vaccine yet, spokesman for the National Coronavirus Headquarters, Abbas Shiravjan, said on Saturday.
“In total, 26% of the country’s population, including children under the age of 12 and other target groups have not been vaccinated at all,” he said.
“This can be extremely dangerous for them, and actually concerning,” the official added.
According to the spokesman, 91% of the target group received the first dose, a “relatively good statistic” but more people need to get the second and third jabs.
Non-vaccinated individuals generally experience more severe symptoms if they catch the virus.
The Health Ministry announced on Saturday that 214,000 more people were vaccinated against Covid-19, bringing the total number of shots administered to 144.5 million.
Over 63.5 million have gotten the first dose, 56 million both shots and 24.8 million have received a booster shot to protect themselves from the contagion.