April 5, 2020
Coronavirus patients arriving at the Rambam Medical Center in Haifa. (Photo: Michel Dot Com)
The Health Ministry on Sunday released updated figures on the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Israel, which now stands at 8,018 people. The number of deaths caused by the virus is now 48, with the latest fatality being that of a 98-year-old woman who had been in poor health before contracting the virus. She died in Jerusalem's Shaare Zedek Medical Center Sunday afternoon.
An 84-year-old woman passed away overnight Saturday at Soroka Medical Center in Beersheba and a 62-year-old man died early Sunday morning at Jerusalem's Hadassah Medical Center.
Additionally, the Defense Ministry and IDF Home Front Command were tasked with helping the Health Ministry cope with the situation in the country's nursing homes.
Of the 8,018 confirmed cases, 7,195 people were in mild condition, 173 were in moderate condition and 127 were in critical condition, among them 106 on ventilators. Thus far, 477 people in Israel have recovered from the virus and the disease it causes, COVID-19.
The 84-year-old woman who died also suffered from a complicated pre-existing medical history and was evacuated several days ago from the Mishan nursing home in Beersheba, becoming the sixth coronavirus victim from that facility.
Amid the backdrop of the tragic spread of the virus at the Mishan nursing home, and as part of the efforts to stop the spread of the virus in Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu decided, as stated, to task the Defense Ministry and Home Front Command with helping the Health Ministry in all aspects of administering the country's nursing homes.
On Saturday evening, meanwhile, a Magen David Adom volunteer paramedic was attacked upon entering Jerusalem's ultra-Orthodox Mea Shearim neighborhood to administer a coronavirus test.
The medic was hit when residents of the neighborhood hurled stones and other objects at him.
He sustained a light head wound and was taken to hospital for treatment. The windshield of his vehicle was also smashed. A criminal report was filed with the police.
"I got out of the municipality-issued vehicle we drive around to take blood samples, and on the way to the home of a person who was showing symptoms [of the coronavirus] — all of a sudden a crowd of people began gathering around me, shouting at me and they threw stones and other things at me," said Nassim Khatib, the medic.
He continued: "My head was slightly injured and the windshield of the car I was driving in was shattered. I immediately reported it to headquarters and a police patrol and ambulance were dispatched to evacuate me to the hospital. It's a tough feeling when you come to do a test for a person who needs help and on the way you're attacked. This can't happen."
As a reminder, Saturday's incident was the third assault against emergency personnel in the past week in Mea Shearim. Earlier Saturday, police forces were attacked while trying to disperse a crowd that had unlawfully gathered to pray at a synagogue in the neighborhood. Some 10 suspects were arrested on charges of assaulting and disobeying an officer.
Early last week, an MDA crew was attacked when trying to enter the neighborhood. The grave incident unfolded when residents identified an Israeli flag on the medics' uniforms and told one of the medics to remove it. They later threw stones at the medics and broke their car windshields. The medics weren't injured in the incident but their driver sustained a shoulder injury. A report was filed with the police.