Israel expands lockdown amid forecast of 10,000-coronavirus victims. Idle hotels turn into quarantine hospitals

More population groups will be confined to their homes in the expanded lockdown announced by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Monday night, March 16 after the number of coronavirus victims rose to 277.  Health Ministry director Moshe Bar Simantov warned that the rate of infections was gaining momentum and doubling itself at high speed. If Israel fails to declare a total lockdown on the country, he warned that the number of covid-19 cases forecast will reach 10,000 in 10 days to two weeks.

The IDF has been enlisted for the first time to help deal with the emergency. The Homeland Defense Command has taken over hotels in the main cities – idle for lack of tourists – for use as centers for the treatment of quarantined coronavirus patients to ease the burden on the hospitals.

While abstaining from a comprehensive national lockdown at this time, the prime minister nonetheless announced more steps in addition to the stringent restrictions already in place.

Economic activity already reduced will be shrunk further by placing the public sector on emergency footing. Most of the work force in government ministries is to be put on unpaid leave until after the Passover holiday. Public institutions including banks will cut down on staff at their desks and public transport scaled down. This latest package is in effect a compromise between the demands of the health authorities and the determination by the ministry of finance that the economy cannot withstand a complete lockdown. Furthermore, digital surveillance of confirmed cases will be in force for 30 days.

The crisis took another sharp turn on Monday with a flood of complaints from hospitals and medical institutions of a severe shortage of equipment for coping with the disease, and lack of protective gear for medical staff.

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17 thoughts on “Israel expands lockdown amid forecast of 10,000-coronavirus victims. Idle hotels turn into quarantine hospitals

  • Mar 16, 2020 @ 21:39 at 21:39
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    How can this be when we are told that the number of cases in Israel is so low? Either we have been lied to about the numbers or we are been lied to now so that “emergency” powers are given to Bibi.

    We need to be told the truth and goverment officials who has lied or deceived us needs to be prosecuted and barred from ever having a government post again.

    • Mar 16, 2020 @ 23:33 at 23:33
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      The number is beginning to increase exponentially, which has been the pattern for COVID 19 in several other countries. The prodromal phase is long, enabling carriers to spread the illness unknowingly.

      • Mar 17, 2020 @ 3:11 at 3:11
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        Exactly. That is the problem: the virus can spread by folk who exhibit zero symptoms.

    • Mar 17, 2020 @ 0:16 at 0:16
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      The reason is that with the level of contagion of D-19, the sluggish way the syumptoms become apparent, and the exponential growth of its spread, there is between ONE AND TWO ORDERS OF MAGNITUDE difference between KNOWN cases and actual infections early in the epidemic. That is, if in the population there are hundreds of KNOWN cases, there are likely to be thousands of people actually infected. These will become KNOWN cases in a week or so. That’s the logic of the numbers, and the predictions make eminent sense.

  • Mar 17, 2020 @ 11:34 at 11:34
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    So what? It’s only the flu!

    • Mar 17, 2020 @ 13:06 at 13:06
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      Regular Flu’s (influenza) death rate is 0.1%. COVID-19 death rate 3% or more. That’s 30 times as much!

  • Mar 17, 2020 @ 14:37 at 14:37
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    The way in which so many governments including our own are following the Event 201 play book is a great concern. It raises the very real question that this is all just a power grab.

    The odds of the Event 201 simulation which occurred 6 weeks BEFORE the first case choosing the same City, County, Virus, etc is statistically very unlikely.

    This “Outbreak” has all the characteristics of a power grab potentially to bring in greater Global Governance.
    https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/event-201-unfolds-covid-19-action-platform-global-government

    • Mar 17, 2020 @ 15:36 at 15:36
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      Eran. Agreed. However globalist control is under a counter-attack. The corona virus, which the globalist deep state developed by sending a scientist over from the University of North Carolina biolab to the lab in Wuhan to weaponise SARS 1, into SARS-2-CoV in 2015, has backfired. Country after country in the world is beginning to see to its own population first and close their borders, which is the opposite of the open borders policy of the globalist who have just seen 20%+ wiped off their stocks and shares.

      • Mar 17, 2020 @ 15:45 at 15:45
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        Furthermore, in national election after election, more and more Europeans have seen Merkel’s policies regarding uncontrolled immigration as part of the global power grab. Increasingly they have voted for nationalist, not globalist policies and rendered Merkel powerless. The Greeks and most other Europeans have seen Turkey as playing a part in the power grab for global governance and now have finally had enough of Turkey too.

    • Mar 17, 2020 @ 16:01 at 16:01
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      That power grab is not going too well. Greece is now building a wall between Greece and Turkey on the mainland and this is supported both financially and militarily by some European nations. Turkey can say goodbye to ever getting membership of the EU.

  • Mar 17, 2020 @ 14:38 at 14:38
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    @Ari
    3% is 0.03.
    0.03 X the US population of 326 million is:
    0.03 X 326 000 000 = 9, 780 000
    i.e. nearly 10 million.

  • Mar 17, 2020 @ 15:04 at 15:04
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    Historians will condemn the US health officials who advised the President as stuck in outdated virus paradigms, or worse.
    At last, the US and several European countries have introduced tax relief, access to interest-free loans, lower interest rates and fiscal stimulus to keep their economies going during the lockdown phase.

    • Mar 17, 2020 @ 15:39 at 15:39
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      IT DOESN’T MATTER. DON THE CON ONLY LISTENS TO AND CARES ABOUT HIMSELF

      • Mar 17, 2020 @ 16:23 at 16:23
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        OK WE WILL GET HIM OUT OF OFFICE AND VOTE IN A DEMOCRAT. HAPPY NOW?

  • Mar 17, 2020 @ 15:21 at 15:21
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    @ Yossi. However the organisational response by the government is still key. Too many countries have still not bitten the bullet and introduced lockdown.
    It is better to shut down practically the whole economy except for food and medical services for 5 weeks as China and S Korea did in order to get control of the virus. Then the economy can begin to restart. In March industrial production began to start up again in China.

    The final toll of dead through Corona depends also on the response of the country involved. The mortality rate need not be 7%.
    The longer that a shutdown is delayed the more catastrophic it will be. Once the number of patients needing care exceeds the number of required staff, ventilators and ICU units then people will die unnecessarily. I note that the US President announced ramped-up production of ventilators.

    In China the initial denial led to new hospitals having to be built in ten day programs. What is also important is that the air induction and extraction systems must be separate for each room so that the virus is not spread through re-circulated air.

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