Israel Sees Resurge in COVID-19 as R Rate Tops 1

Refrigerators that will be used to store coronavirus vaccines, at the Teva Pharmaceuticals’ logistics center in Shoham. (Yossi Aloni/Flash90)

Israel’s coronavirus R-value — which indicates how many people on average a single virus carrier infects — has topped 1 for the first time in months, the Health Ministry reported Motzoei Shabbos.

The virus’s reproduction number, or R-value, has reached 1.02, indicating that the pandemic may be making a comeback in Israel after weeks of steady decline.

The ministry reported that 497 Israelis tested positive for the virus out of some 77,000 tests carried out over the past 24 hours, putting the country’s contagion rate at 0.65%.

Israeli hospitals were treating 176 COVID-19 patients, 133 of whom were in serious condition. Of the seriously ill, 83.3% have not received a single dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Meanwhile, Israel will launch its children’s COVID-19 vaccination campaign on Tuesday, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett wrote Friday.

Special 10-microgram Pfizer vaccine doses for children ages five to 11 arrived in Israel on Motzoei Shabbos.

The vaccines were sent to the Teva Pharmaceuticals logistics center in Shoham, from where they will be distributed to the health funds.