חיטוי וניקויון בתחנות ורכבות ישראל למניעת התפשטות נגיף הקורונה
Health workers disinfecting an Israel Railways train
Photo: Israel Railways
Health workers disinfecting an Israel Railways train

Israel's coronavirus tally climbs to 298

Health Ministry accidentally reported dozens more cases, before issuing updated numbers hours later showing rise of 27 new patients; ministry official says more far-reaching restrictions under consideration

Ynet |
Updated: 03.16.20 , 21:45
The Health Ministry on Monday reported 48 new confirmed Israeli coronavirus cases, bringing the total number to 298 people.
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  • Of that number, at least four patients remain in a serious condition.
    חיטוי וניקויון בתחנות ורכבות ישראל למניעת התפשטות נגיף הקורונהחיטוי וניקויון בתחנות ורכבות ישראל למניעת התפשטות נגיף הקורונה
    Health workers disinfecting an Israel Railways train
    (Photo: Israel Railways )
    Earlier, the ministry accidentally reported an inflated number of coronavirus cases in Israel, briefly claiming a rise of almost 90 patients in less than a day before almost immediately pulling the numbers and revising back to 250.
    Also Monday, the Health Ministry's deputy director-general Itamar Grotto said the government is considering imposing more strict restrictions on movement as part of the measures to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.
    “We may ask people to leave the house less, and only for necessary errands," Grotto said. "The government is considering a general closure on all citizens, and if that happens it would mean all age groups will be asked to stay home until further notice."
    Grotto also said the ministry was “planning greater oversight for the 70+ population," which is more at risk.
    Health Ministry Deputy Director-General Itamar Grotto Health Ministry Deputy Director-General Itamar Grotto
    Health Ministry Deputy Director-General Itamar Grotto
    (Photo: Asaf Magal)
    "We’re preparing now for hospitals to be able to contain the coronavirus patients who will need treatment, and most of the less urgent patients will be hospitalized at home unless it is impossible due to socioeconomic or familial reasons.”
    Grotto's announcement came after the ministry's top brass held further discussions over the implementation of increasingly drastic measures to limit contact with the virus and slow its spread.
    “For the time being, a general shutdown of the economy isn’t planned,” a senior official told reporters on Monday, but added that “the government is preparing to cut back on public transportation.”
    The government approved on Sunday a series of emergency regulations to deal with the outbreak of the coronavirus, among them a NIS 5,000 (roughly $1,360) fine for individuals who are found to be violating their quarantine.

    שוטרים עוצרים צעירה שהפרה בידוד ביתי בתל אביבשוטרים עוצרים צעירה שהפרה בידוד ביתי בתל אביב
    Police arrive to arrest a woman who violated her quarantine in Tel Aviv
    (Photo: Amir Meiri)
    According to the regulations, police and local authorities can impose fines on individuals who breach quarantine or the Health Ministry's ban on mass gatherings.
    A NIS 5,000 fine will also be imposed for violating isolation obligations and leaving quarantine prematurely.
    A NIS 3,000 fine will be imposed for failing to report to the Health Ministry about entering quarantine or failing to report arrival from abroad.
    A NIS 5,000 fine will be imposed for violating a police officer's order to disperse a mass gathering.
    Additional steps were approved to prevent the spread of the pathogen in prisons. Among them, the reassignment of incarceration facilities as quarantine compounds for prisoners.
    First published: 21:14 , 03.16.20
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