Lowest Coronavirus Infection Rate in Israel Since July

A man wearing a face mask walks in the Old City of Yerushalayim on Tuesday, during a nationwide lockdown. (Nati Shohat/Flash90)

Israel saw its lowest coronavirus infection rate since July, health data released Wednesday morning showed.

The Health Ministry reported that on Tuesday 2,255 people tested positive for the coronavirus after 44,369 tests had been conducted, putting the contagion rate at 5.4%.

The number of patients in serious condition now stands at 808, of whom 240 are ventilated. The official death toll has gone up to 2,055.

There are 48,015 active patients in Israel. Some 5,617 of them are in Yerushalayim, 4,279 in Bnei Brak, 2,170 in Modi’in Illit, 1,791 in Ashdod, 1,675 in Tel Aviv-Yafo, 1,349 in Netanya, 1,297 in Petach Tikvah, 1,248 in Beit Shemesh and 1,045 in Be’er Sheva.

Meanwhile, the Coronavirus Cabinet late Tuesday extended the nationwide lockdown until midnight Sunday, although this could change when the Cabinet meets again on Thursday.

Among the new regulations approved by the Cabinet, it is now possible to go to a relative’s wedding and demonstrate beyond the one-kilometer range.

Restrictions on flights abroad were extended only until Thursday, with another discussion on the matter set to be held on Wednesday.

On Thursday, a discussion will be held to evaluate a preliminary move for the exit plan, according to the morbidity data, including the opening next week of small businesses that do not receive the public, kindergartens and takeout.

The Cabinet also approved Finance Minister Yisrael Katz’s proposal to extend the emergency ordinance that restricts activity at places of work until Sunday, in order to halt the spread of the coronavirus.

The regulations that have been extended determine that until Sunday activity at places of work shall be completely restricted other than places of work that have been duly exempted.

The Bnei Brak municipality announced on Wednesday that in recent days, the number of recovering people in the city (565) is two times higher than the current 231 patients diagnosed in those days.

The city has thus recorded a 62% decrease in the number of verified patients. In the last week, 1,610 new patients were registered in the city, while the week before the number was 4,181, according to data from the Health Ministry.

The trend of recovery, along with the municipality’s actions that will continue, make it unnecessary to continue the closure that the city has been experiencing for many weeks, the municipality said. The state must do everything in its power to enable the city’s residents to return to educational institutions, open their businesses and, most importantly, return to routine while maintaining restrictions and adhering to health regulations.