Prepare for 1,500 seriously ill patients by Oct 1: Israel’s Netanyahu

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends the first Cabinet meeting of the new government at the Chagall Hall in the Knesset, the Israeli Parliament in Jerusalem, Israel, Sunday, May 24, 2020.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said that hospitals should be ready to treat at least 1,500 seriously ill coronavirus-infected patients by October 1, as the infection rate in the country has continued to increase unabated.

As of Monday evening, the number of seriously ill Covid-19 patients in Israel stood at 763, while the overall tally increased to 233,118 with 1,499, The Times of Israel quoted the Health Ministry’s latest update as saying.

In a statement issued by his office on Monday evening, Netanyahu believes that the ongoing complete lockdown could be extended if the rate of infection continued to increase.

Following discussions on Sunday, the Prime Minister directed authorities to submit plans aimed to curb the virus spread on Wednesday when the coronavirus cabinet convenes.

According to The Times of Israel report, the cabinet is also likely to discuss other key issues, including vaccines, use of rapid Covid-19 tests, enforcement of regulations, as well as increasing fines and sanctions for violators.

On September 26, Netanyahu admitted that his government made mistakes in emerging from Israel’s first national lockdown earlier this year.

“Did we make mistakes in the past? Of course,” The Times of Israel quoted the Prime Minister as saying in a Hebrew video released by his office.

“The opening of event halls was too fast. Maybe the opening of the whole school system.”

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