Islamic Republic Health Minister predicts even worse days ahead as coronavirus gets momentum across Iran. Saeed Namaki said his cautious predictions were not taken seriously for many reasons, provoking another set of “blaming game” among regime officials. He said the coronavirus map of the country is heading towards becoming “black.” A few hours later, Ministry of Health released the new colors for counties. According to the new map, 295 counties are “red”, 99 “orange”, 45 “yellow” and only 9 “blue.” The Ministry also announced the current tsunami of COVID-19 is 4 times faster to spread than the previous waves.
Provinces continue to report devastating status. For instance, Hamedan hospitals are out of vacant ICU beds, Alborz positivity rate is 70% and hospitals full, Markazi has to use hospitals cafeteria as triage, Bushehr hospitals are at full capacity erecting field hospitals, and Gilan reported 3-5 times increase in its cases! However, Islamic Republic officials continue to be loose about measures taken to control the coronavirus in Iran. The semi-lockdown is not enforced even after 2 days and people blame the government for not banning travel during Persian New Year holidays!
Chairman of Tehran City Council rebuked regime officials for their empty promises on vaccination, saying vaccines are the only way through these difficult times. Mohsen Hashemi reported more than 70 daily COVID-19 deaths in Tehran alone. Chairman of Mashhad Medical Board also criticized the government for their slow vaccination process, saying less than 10% of board members have been vaccinated so far. That’s a very different number from previous claims that 80% of healthcare staff had been immunized. While Islamic Republic is behind its own vaccination program and less than 0.2 of the population have received a shot so far, Chinese government admits its Sinopharm vaccine, used by Ministry of Health, is useless! According to Gao Fu, the Director of Chinese CDC, its efficacy is low and must be used in combination with other vaccines or with increased dosage!
Ministry of Health Spokesperson presented her daily engineered data. Iran Medical Board and others have dismissed the figures as undercounted, admitting the real numbers are at least 3 times higher. Sima Sadat Lari claimed 258 died of COVID-19 in Iran in the past 24 hours while 21,063 tested positive for the novel coronavirus. The daily PCR tests reached 96,000 for the first time in 14 months. Active cases continue to soar, breaking all the records, as seen on the graphs.
Total: 2,070,141 (+21,063)
Dead: 64,490 (+258)
Critical: 4,392 (+63)
Active Cases: 294,677 (+11,893)
Tests: 13,673,466 (16.4% of the population, assuming each test was performed on 1 person)
Cover: Mohammadreza Abbasi