Israel on Wednesday reported over 700 new COVID-19 for second consecutive day as the new Omicron variant appears to pick up pace.
The Health Ministry said 786 people tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday, and after 106,500 tests had been conducted, the infection rate now stands at 0.75%. The R value - indicating the spread of illness in the community - is reported to be above 1 for the second day in a row, having recently fallen below 1.
According to the ministry, 56% of those found to have been infected were under the age of 11, some 7% were aged 12-15 and 4% only were in the over 60 age group – considered the at-risk section of the population.
The data also showed that 54% of infections were found in the general population, 24% in the Haredi sector and 21% in the Arab sector.
There are 142 people currently hospitalized for treatment after developing complications from COVID. At least 102 of them are in serious condition, of whom 59 are connected to ventilators. The number of hospitalizations is the lowest figure reported since late July.
There are now six local authorities in Israel classified as "red" due to high morbidity and two neighborhoods in Jerusalem with similar classification.
In Tiberias, where 48 people are sick with the virus, a surge of 380% was reported in the past week.
In the southern city of Ofakim a 210% surge was reported and in Ra'anana, north of Tel Aviv, the rise in cases has seen as a 180% increase.