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There’s no policy of mass infection, COVID czar insists amid PM’s gloomy forecast

Coronavirus czar Salman Zarka attends a press conference about the coronavirus, in Jerusalem on August 29, 2021. (Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90)
Coronavirus czar Salman Zarka attends a press conference about the coronavirus, in Jerusalem on August 29, 2021. (Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90)

Coronavirus czar Salman Zarka pushes back against growing speculation that the government’s new policy amid rapidly rising case numbers is to aim for herd immunity in hopes that the weaker Omicron strain quickly spreading throughout the country won’t be capable of overwhelming the hospital system.

“We have no policy of mass infection. [Claims that we’re trying to reach] herd immunity have no basis. We are currently facing a combined wave, with the Delta variant still active, and quite a few hospitalized patients are suffering from it,” Zarka says in a briefing.

The remarks came a day after Prime Minister Naftali Bennett speculated that Israel might reach 50,000 daily cases due to the inability to stop the spread of the Omicron variant.

“Our goal is to balance the rapid detection of verified cases, especially among high-risk groups whom we can offer the new drugs we’ve acquired, while at the same time allow as much normal life as possible,” Zarka says. “But it is a new routine we have to adapt to the fast-spreading wave we’re currently facing.”

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