In Mashhad alone, Omicron infection among minors has increased 2-3 times in the past month. COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and daily death toll in Iran continue to rise. An epidemiologist warns that cases will keep surging for another 10 days and daily death toll for another 2 weeks. Dr. Souri criticized the government again for lack of “active case finding”. He rebuked the Ministry of Health for using a flawed “coloring” system, calling it “totally wrong!” He also expressed his disappointment in the officials for dismantling “rapid response teams.” He added, vaccines alone would not help control the virus but all protocols must be followed.
Fars reports more than 220 hospitalizations and double-digit deaths. Head of Shiraz Medical University said the scale of Omicron spread is out of public’s imagination. Deputy Head of the university called on people not to visit hospitals, doctor offices or clinics unless it is absolutely necessary. Coronavirus is unleashed in West Azerbaijan. Critical cases soar in Khuzestan. Omicron in Ardabil is flaring up. While Rasht Governor urges the officials to close schools for in-person classes, South Khorasan makes it mandatory! In addition, the officials in Mashhad encourage people to travel for pilgrims to hard-hit and second major city in the country. Crowded national entrance exams are scheduled to happen.
According to official definition of “full vaccination” and Ministry of Health data, since February 9, only 22,359,883 (26.61% of Iran population) are vaccinated against COVID-19 with these vaccines. It is estimated that more than 53 million Iranians are at risk of contracting Omicron. The majority of shots used in Iran are the ineffective Sinopharm and COVIran Barekat. WHO recommends 3 doses of Sinopharm to be effective against Delta but studies have found the vaccine ineffective against Omicron.
The Islamic Republic “Supreme Leader” banned the relaibale US and UK made vaccines, leading to tsunami of deaths during Delta wave. Khamenei promoted his foundation’s shot, COVIran Barekat, which failed miserably. Multiple “homegrown” vaccines, including PastoCoVac, COVPars, Fakhra, Noora, Spikogen, never met the expectations and none of them has published their results or received recognition/approval from international health organizations. WHO even warned about fake AstraZeneca shots used in Iran. The Ministry of Health denied the report saying the international health body meant the “black market doses used.”
The Ministry of Health Spokesperson claimed 236 have died of COVID-19 in the past 24 hours and 19,110 tested positive for the novel coronavirus. Number of daily tests performed in the country continue to decline despite experts advice to have a more active case finding. Active cases soar and critical patients reach a new record. Professor of Epidemiology at Tehran University believes these numbers must be multiplied by 7 and Civil Registration Organization data show more than 320,000 have died of the disease since February 2020.
Total: 6,961,562 (+19,110)
Dead: 135,276 (+236)
Critical: 4,085 (+32)
Active Cases: 308,850 (-8,642)
Total Tests: 46,701,520
Cover: Mina Noei