Israel saw 1,681 new cases of coronavirus in the previous 24 hours, the Health Ministry said Tuesday morning, marking the second time in a week the country has reported a record number of daily infections since the pandemic began.
According to the ministry's National Coronavirus Information and Knowledge Center, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases is expected to double every 12 days with the current infection rate.
There are now 177 patients in serious condition, with 55 people on ventilators. A total of 21,118 people are currently battling the virus in Israel.
Three more people succumbed to COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, bringing the national death toll to 368.
Since the start of July, another 15,525 people have been infected with the virus, almost as many as the total number of infections in March and April combined.
According to the Health Ministry, the cities with most new cases reported over the past week were Bnei Brak with 693 new cases, Tel Aviv with 648, and Ashdod with 337.
Health Ministry Deputy Director-General Prof. Itamar Grotto told Ynet on Tuesday that the government is hoping to drastically reduce the number of daily cases in order to avoid a nationwide lockdown, He said that the rise in seriously ill patients - which has doubled in a week - is of great concern.
On Monday, the Knesset's coronavirus committee overturned a government decision to keep swimming pools and gyms closed, citing a lack of evidence that they are a major source of infection.
Grotto said, however, that gyms would again be closed in a revised government decision.
First published: 10:48, 07.14.20