337 deaths due to COVID-19 in Iran in the past 24 hours is a record, while 5,960 have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in the same period. Sima Sadat Lari announced the entire country is in critical status and people must follow health protocols more vigorously. Ministry of Health Spokesperson also said, 50% of government employees are to work from home and high risk businesses must be closed from today in Tehran. However, according to local reports, none of these have decreased inner-city traffic and the use of public transportation system, one of the main ways of coronavirus spreading in the capital!
In the meantime, Fars, one of the 4 “alarming” provinces while the other 27 are “red,” reported 21 deaths in the past 24 hours, roughly 1 death per hour. If we consider the situation is the same in the rest of the country, while in fact, it’s worse, there have been 651 deaths since yesterday across Iran! It’s been established the data provided by Ministry of Health are highly undercounted and manipulated. One of the reasons the government stopped providing individual provincial stats since March 22 was easier handling of the information.
Hospitals across the country continue struggling with the flood of patients. The City of Yazd is on complete lockdown, and all businesses other than the vital ones are closed from today for a week. Lorestan, Ilam, Isfahan, Qom, Alborz, Kerman, Khuzestan, and many other provinces experience the dilemma of whether to close down or continue with the current situation. According to Semnan officials, if this goes on, worse days are ahead and eventually, the healthcare system will collapse completely.
In the meantime, a “religious scholar” and IRGC-affiliated held a gathering with thousands of people in Mashhad. The city is one of the most infested cities in the country. Still, he’s permitted to have a propaganda program about “renewing pact with Imam Zaman”. People would have to use overcrowded public transportation to get to the venue, apart from all the touching to get in and out of the location. Raefipour is a conspiracy theorist who started the idea of COVID-19 being a biological attack against Islamic Republic, the concept which Khamenei reiterated! Jahanpur, head of Public Relations at Ministry of Health, announced he wasn’t given any permit from the Ministry! That’s how Khamenei’s “recommendations” are followed!
In addition to coronavirus, Islamic Republic mismanagement of the economy and corruption have led to an unprecedented poverty in the country. Most Iranians live under the poverty line and can’t afford their daily needs.
Basic Reproduction Rate (R0) and graphs indicate the dreadful COVID-19 situation in Iran. Active cases keep rising while critical patients are more than ICUs capacity! Testing has increased compared to a week before with 17.55% positivity rate. So far, a fraction of the population has been tested.
Total: 574,856 (+5,960)
Dead: 32,953 (+337)
Critical: 4,982 (+13)
Admitted: 82,653 (+1,427)
Tests: 4,753,357 (6.1% of the population, assuming each test was performed on 1 person)
Cover: Vahid Bayat