Israel on Sunday again saw its COVID-19 reproduction number and severe cases spike, just days after health officials said the fourth infection wave had started to ebb.
The Health Ministry reported that 10,084 people tested positive for coronavirus on Saturday. After 165,299 COVID tests had been conducted, Israel's contagion rate now stands at 6.60%.
The increase in the number of new verified cases has been partially attributed to the high contagion rate among pilgrims returning from Rosh Hashanah celebrations in the Ukrainian city of Uman. Over 1,600 pilgrims tested positive for coronavirus on September 9-10.
The country’s number of seriously ill COVID-19 patients has also seen an increase and now stands at 697 after being stable for the past few weeks.
According to the Health Ministry, the majority of those in critical condition have not been vaccinated against COVID at all.
The average number of serious cases per 100,000 patients stands at 6.4 among those under the age of 60 who have not been vaccinated, 1.6 among those aged 60 and under who have been vaccinated but did not receive the third jab, and 0.7 among those who also received the third jab.
Among those aged 60 and over who have not been vaccinated at all, the number of critically ill patients per 100,000 cases stands at 169.1, among those in the same age group who were given only two doses of the vaccine the number stands at 39.5, while among those in the same age group who received all three jabs the number stands at 4.5.
The nation’s “R” number - which indicates how many people on average a single COVID patient infects - has also increased and now stands at 0.96, compared to 0.85 last week.
The number of people in Israel who died due to COVID-19 related complications since the start of the pandemic on Saturday reached 7,338 after 29 more patients died over the weekend.
Thus far, over 6 million Israelis received the first dose of the COVID vaccine, over 5.5 received the second jab, and over 2.8 million received the booster.