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Health Minister: Rough Week Ahead

Dr Saeid Namaki, Health Minister of the Islamic Republic, attended a press conference today and said, “We have a rough week ahead of us. We’re on the wave of managing the Coronavirus and with people’s cooperation will defeat the disease in the next few weeks.” He added, “Coronavirus will reach its peak in the next few days, but that doesn’t mean panic, with everybody’s cooperation we can control it. We ask people not to go out unless absolutely necessary, we believe traffic should be restricted.”

He continued, “To help us with extra beds and disinfecting public areas, military doctors, nurses and staff would be helping us and we have given permission to Universities of Medical Sciences across the country to employ new staff temporarily for a short period of time.”

Health Minister regarding quarantine said, “We don’t believe in quarantine, and it is not a scientific method. However, we will impose restrictions on travels, implement entrance check points and every suspected case will be quarantined for 14 days.”

He added, “Work hours should be checked with Corona National Committee. Two hours delay in the beginning of the day or two hours early finish is advised. Employees with preexisting conditions should stop attending the work place, either take sick leave or work remotely.”

About school closings Namaki said, “We had decided not to close schools in provinces with no COVID-19 case, but considering today’s stats, we changed our mind, ALL schools will be closed from Saturday to Monday. Education Ministry would continue classes remotely with cooperation of IRIB, on radio and TV.” He continued, “Universities will be closed for another week, although, the professors will continue to teach remotely via internet.”

He mentioned the low risk prisoners should be given leave if they are not at risk of the virus or spreading it. He said, “Tonight a new cargo of disinfectant and masks will arrive, we will distribute them to all drugstores, including private ones, and will impose rules so they would be sold at a reasonable price.”

Saeid Namaki announced that all public arenas including sport venues will be closed in the coming week. All soccer matches will be held with no spectators. Iʿtikāf is canceled across the country and previously passed rules will be extended for another week. All these decisions are sent to the President for final approval.

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