The national death toll from the coronavirus pandemic rose to 94 Friday, with six new deaths reported by the Health Ministry, as Israel’s number of confirmed cases surpassed 10,000.
Meanwhile, officials reported 127 new diagnosed cases, putting the updated national number at 10,095. Of those cases, 164 were in serious condition, with 125 on ventilators. Another 178 people were in moderate condition, with the rest having mild symptoms. And 1,061 have recovered from the illness.
Two of the dead were women, 86 and 84 years old, who had been hospitalized at Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center. The hospital said they had both suffered from complex preexisting conditions. The two were residents of the same assisted living facility in Jerusalem.
Two woman, in their 80s, died at Laniado Hospital in Netanya. One 90-year-old man, a resident of an old-age home in the northern town of Yavne’el, died at the Hillel Yaffe Hospital in Hadera. Another woman, Lea Schwartz, 85, died at a geriatric hospital in Jaffa.
The novel coronavirus has been spreading quickly in nursing homes around the country, raising intense concern for the safety of elderly residents. The Health Ministry said Thursday it was conducting tests over Passover at assisted living facilities where there have been confirmed COVID-19 cases, adding that 3,000 tests were expected to be performed on each of the coming days.
Almost all of those who have died from COVID-19 in Israel have been elderly and suffered from preexisting conditions, according to hospital officials.
While the death toll has continued to steadily climb, experts have pointed to the relatively slow rise in the number of patients on ventilators as a source of potential encouragement.
Putting a dent in the optimism, health officials are projecting that Israel will fall short of testing 10,000 people a day for the coronavirus in the immediate term because of a shortage of a key reagent.
A national lockdown barring intercity travel came into effect Tuesday ahead of the Passover holiday and was lifted Friday morning. Separately, a curfew was maintained over the first night of the holiday on Wednesday, to prevent further spread of the virus, and lifted at 7 a.m. on Thursday morning.