Another record-breaking day for coronavirus in Iran. According to manipulated data of Islamic Republic Ministry of Health, 24,760 tested positive for the novel coronavirus while 291 died of COVID-19 in the past 24 hours. However, Iran Medical Board and other officials believe the real numbers are at least 3 times higher. As COVID-19 is ravaging through the country, officials are awed by the speed of spread and overwhelming number of cases. Hospitals are at full capacity all four corners of Iran and even field hospitals are filling up quickly. According to health authorities, even the semi-lockdown they had promised is not enforced.
For instance, Tehran City Council reported about 100 COVID-19 deaths a day in the capital. Markazi is asking for help to provide oxygen to its patients. According to Arak Medical University, shortage of oxygen is at a dangerous level and the whole province needs oxygen supply, prompting them to start “breath campaign.” Shiraz officials announced a field hospital in the city’s stadium. Fars also reports 50% positivity rate for its daily coronavirus tests. Khuzestan is already worried about the next peak in the province as Eid Fitr, warm weather and inside gatherings approaches. Lorestan authorities describe their situation as “dangerous and unsatisfactory.”
Despite the devastating COVID-19 situation in Iran, Health Minister allowed Ramdan Qadr night gatherings, starting from tomorrow. However, that’s not enough for religious leaders and they are demanding “religious experts” to become part of the National Task Force, offering their opinions on how important religious gatherings are in healing process of the society and the ill. They refer the Task Force to last year’s Khamenei order where he emphasized that “prayers is an essential need for people,” and a day later, Saeed Namaki announced his permission. Even though, he later on admitted that was the cause of new waves in some provinces.
Mr. Health Minister in a meeting with the head of “Execution of Imam Khomeini’s Order”, responsible for developing COVIran Barekat coronavirus vaccine, repeated his previous claims that mass vaccination will begin by the end of spring. He boasted Iran will become one of the pillars of vaccine production in the world soon. He finished his speech by reassuring everybody that “prayers” during Ramadan will help the country overcome the current tsunami of COVID-19.
Saeed Namaki has been under fire from different organizations (students, nurses, physicians,…) for the vaccination process and roll out. According to latest statistics, less than 0.2% of population has received a shot of any vaccine, and a few thousands of healthcare staff has been vaccinated. In the meantime, Martyr Organization announced they are ready to start the second phase of veterans and parents of martyrs vaccination.
According to the Ministry of Health figures, critical cases continue to rise and active cases reach a new high every day, as seen on the graphs.
Total: 2,118,212 (+24,760)
Dead: 65,055 (+291)
Critical: 4,481 (+41)
Active Cases: 323,864 (+15,260)
Tests: 13,866,887 (16.7% of the population, assuming each test was performed on 1 person)
Cover: Khadijeh Naderi