COVID in Israel: Severe Cases Rise as Delta Runs Rampant

While Bennett says Israel is 'very close' to obtaining third COVID vaccine doses, experts disagree over whether a third dose is safe or necessary

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Haaretz
Masked Israelis in Tel Aviv on Monday.
Masked Israelis in Tel Aviv on Monday.Credit: Hadas Parush
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Haaretz

Israel reported 2,260 coronavirus cases from Tuesday, with cases topping 2,000 for the second day in a row as the delta variant of the novel coronavirus continues to spread throughout Israel.

It was also reported that 2.38 percent of COVID tests were positive.

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The number of COVID-19 patients in serious condition stands at 153, according to health ministry data; of those, 35 are in critical condition and 26 are on ventilators.

On Tuesday, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said Israel is "very close" to obtaining more coronavirus vaccines to supply Israelis with a third dose.

"We are working on it, believe me," Bennett said.

"There are things we need to do in order to obtain [the doses]. The less we talk about it the more likely it'll happen. I'm on it."

Israel’s top medical personnel, who are advising the prime minister, are divided on the need for the elderly to get the proposed third coronavirus vaccine shots. They are scheduled to meet Wednesday for further discussion after failing to reach a consensus at a meeting last week.

A slim majority on Israel's vaccination committee supports a third dose for the elderly, but it has not yet made a recommendation to the Heath Ministry director general, Prof. Nachman Ash, who has the final say.

Israel reported Tuesday a four-month record of new coronavirus cases, with the number of patients in serious condition continuing to rise sharply.

On Monday, Israel saw a twenty-day peak in the number of newly vaccinated people, the majority of whom received their second jab. The data comes after Bennett slammed unvaccinated people who chose not to inoculate during a televised address.

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