966 New Coronavirus Patients in the Past Day; Death Toll Rises to 324

YERUSHALAYIM -
Technicians carry out a diagnostic test for coronavirus in a lab at Clalit Health Services branch in Tel Aviv. (Yossi Zeliger/Flash90)

Records keep breaking, and not for the good. There were 966 people in Israel who tested positive for coronavirus on Wednesday, the Health Ministry reported Thursday morning, the highest number to date since the start of the pandemic, after the day before had brought a new record.

There are currently 8,647 active cases of the virus, with 58 patients listed in serious condition.

The Health Ministry reported that more than 20,000 people were tested on Wednesday.

Three more people died on Wednesday, bringing the country’s death toll to 324.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Benny Gantz have agreed to convene the Coronavirus Cabinet to discuss possible further lockdowns on cities with high infection rates and tighter restrictions on public gatherings.

According to reports, the ministers could vote to limit attendance at event halls and restaurants to 50 people.

Closures were enforced in Ashdod’s Gimmel, Zayin and Chet neighborhoods and in Lod’s Rakevet, Snir and Neveh Shalom neighborhoods from 8 a.m. Thursday, and will last seven days.

Traffic into and out of these neighborhoods is limited, as is movement and the opening of businesses within them.

Addressing a phone conference of the Cabinet Wednesday night, Netanyahu told the ministers, “The numbers of new cases are rising and there is nothing on the horizon to stop them if we don’t act immediately with significant steps.”