Istanbul faces 3rd wave in coronavirus outbreak, top expert warns

Istanbul faces 3rd wave in coronavirus outbreak, top expert warns

Istanbul turned “red” this week in a color-coded map showing the level of risk from the coronavirus in 81 provinces of Turkey. With roughly 178 cases per population of 100,000 people, the country’s most crowded city of more than 15 million people is now in the “third wave” of the outbreak, Serap Şimşek Yavuz said. Yavuz, a member of the Health Ministry’s Coronavirus Scientific Advisory Board, which advises the government on measures, said the city is still far from the “peak,” a level in cases that is usually followed by a drop in cases, Trend reports citing Daily Sabah.

Turkey dialed down restrictions for most provinces, based on the number of weekly cases, earlier this month. This new “normalization” process, however, appears to threaten the improvement in controlling the outbreak. Experts say increased social mobility with normalization that has seen partial removal of weekend lockdowns and reopening of some businesses like restaurants and cafes might have contributed to a rise in the cases. The number of daily cases exceeded 20,000 on Thursday, while daily fatalities surpassed 80 for the first time this year.

Yavuz, who also works at the infectious diseases department of the Istanbul Faculty of Medicine at Istanbul University (IÜ), told Demirören News Agency (DHA) on Friday that they have seen an upward trend in cases in Istanbul. “Positive test rates exceeded 10%. The current average number of weekly cases is already a high number. It is safe to say we are in the midst of a third wave. We see the impact of (reopening). At our hospital (at the faculty) alone, we have seen an influx of new patients this week and a positive test rate of around 12%. I believe we have difficult days ahead,” she warned.

She said the number of fatalities would be lower after vaccination but the majority of people in Istanbul have not been inoculated yet. “They are under a very high risk of infection. Therefore, we have to comply with rules, like not coming into close contact with others, avoid staying long in enclosed public spaces, always wearing protective masks and regularly ventilate enclosed spaces,” she stressed.

Professor Sait Gönen, who heads the Cerrahpaşa Faculty of Medicine in the city, says alarm bells are ringing for Istanbul and their hospital has seen a 30% rise in hospital visits due to the coronavirus, although hospital stays did not change. “People should not think that normalization means the outbreak is over,” he told DHA. “We cannot live with restrictions forever but we should not remain indoors in (public) places too long without a mask,” he warned.

Gönen noted that their hospital had 38 patients as of Thursday and six others were in intensive care. “We had 55 patients in intensive care during the peak after the second wave,” he recalled. Cerrahpaşa’s laboratory has run more than 180,000 COVID-19 tests since March 2020, when the first cases were reported in the country and 21,000 among them turned out positive.

“This corresponds to a rate of about 11% (of all tests) and in the past 45 days, this rate is around 5%,” he noted. But Gönen is less concerned about the third wave. “We now know more about the coronavirus than we knew back in March 2020. The second wave in October-November 2020 was more like a tsunami for us and we had far more patients than those in the first wave. I don’t think the third wave would be as intense as the second because we have an upper hand and that is, the inoculation of people in risk groups,” he said. He added that the weather was also getting warmer and more people would spend time outdoors, decreasing the risk which is higher indoors. “But we need to be cautious anyway. You see a significant rise in cases in European countries nowadays, despite vaccinations,” he added.

Azerbaijan's MFA issues appeal on occasion of April 18 - International Day for Monuments and Historic Sites
Azerbaijan's MFA issues appeal on occasion of April 18 - International Day for Monuments and Historic Sites
Azerbaijan shares footage from Tarovlu village of the Gubadli region (VİDEO)
Azerbaijan shares footage from Tarovlu village of the Gubadli region (VİDEO)
Azerbaijan's State Treasury Agency to update information systems via tender
Azerbaijan's State Treasury Agency to update information systems via tender
Loading Bars
Serbia - gateway to European market for Iran - Deputy Minister
France to impose 10-day quarantine for travellers coming from Brazil
Azerbaijani Finance Ministry to engage archiving services via tender
Kyrgyzstan adds 244 new COVID-19 cases
Israel raises import of clothes from Turkey
Iran's Energy Exchange announces products to be on sale on April 18
Capital of Bank Keshavarzi Iran to increase
Iran's trade turnover with Georgia decreases
Azerbaijan's MFA issues appeal on occasion of April 18 - International Day for Monuments and Historic Sites
Azerbaijan shares footage from Tarovlu village of the Gubadli region (VİDEO)
Slovak investors note potential in Georgia's energy sector
Czechs expel 18 Russian envoys, accuse Moscow over ammunition depot blast
Azerbaijan's State Treasury Agency to update information systems via tender
Earthquake hits Georgia
Iran, Serbia FMs meet in Tehran
Magnitude 5.8 earthquake hits Japan
Kazakhstan’s COVID-19 caseload up by 2,822
Iran's trade turnover with Pakistan shrinks
Brazil registers over 370,000 deaths from COVID-19
5.8-magnitude quake strikes off Japan's Miyagi Prefecture
Iraq reports 6,552 new COVID-19 cases, 970,987 in total
More than 805,000 COVID-19 infections detected worldwide over past 24 hours
5.1-magnitude quake hits 20 km S of Mandraki, Greece
Israel reports 142 new COVID-19 cases, 836,882 in total
Yemen's Houthi rebels say launch drone attack on Saudi air base
India's sports minister tests positive for COVID-19
Weekly review of highlights in Azerbaijan's transport sector
EU to hand over 30 vehicles to Georgia Border Police
Turkish scientist works on drug that can ‘kill COVID-19 in 2 days’
Uzbekistan may start production of its own vaccine against COVID-19 by the end of the year
Russia's Eastwind, Turkmenistan's Turkmensvyaz to sign contract
UK records another 2,206 coronavirus cases, 35 deaths
Iranian official offers upbeat assessment of progress in nuclear talks
Volume of goods transported by Azerbaijan’s vehicles in 2021 disclosed
Indonesia reports 5,041 new COVID-19 cases, 132 new deaths
Global COVID-19 deaths surpass 3 mln - Johns Hopkins University
Geostat reveals volume of Russian exports to Georgia
Solar panel station put into operation in Iran’s Razavi Khorasan Province
New auction to be held for Azerbaijani Finance Ministry's mid-term bonds
Georgia increases import of vehicles from Turkey
Kyrgyzstan imposes restrictive measures at airports
Bahar Azadi gold coin price rebounds in Iran
Foreigners to pass simplified visa procedures for 2021 F1 Azerbaijan Grand Prix
Serbian FM to visit Tehran today
Azerbaijan discloses number of COVID-19 vaccinated citizens
Azerbaijan confirms 2,148 more COVID-19 cases, 2,287 recoveries
Armenia falsified Caucasian Albania temples in Azerbaijan - rep of religious community
Iran to send trade attaché to Azerbaijan
Weekly review of major events in Azerbaijan's oil & gas sector
Azerbaijan shares footage from Jabrayil's Dash Veysalli village (VIDEO)
Armenia strived to create history for itself in Azerbaijan's lands - Head of Albanian-Udi community
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for April 17
Volume of loaded and unloaded cargo in Iran’s Charak port climbs
Azerbaijani oil prices on rise
VICE News report on Armenia's attack on Azerbaijani Barda nominated for award
Weekly review of main events in ICT sector of Azerbaijan
Earnings from fuel savings in Iran paid to investors
Uzbekistan's CCI, Portuguese Industrial Association establish co-op
Buy/sell operations at Iran Mercantile Exchange soar
Rosatom, Uzbekistan working on contract for building nuclear power plant
Turkmenistan to create electronic exchange database
IMF calls on Georgia to reduce capital expenditures in case of lockdown
Russia reports a new high of 9,321 coronavirus cases since March 20
Azerbaijan's Albanian-Udi Christian community members visit ancient temple in Tugh - Trend TV (PHOTO)
OSCE MG should force Armenia to follow terms of trilateral statement - Azerbaijan's Parliament
Weekly review of Azerbaijani currency market
Azerbaijan, Turkic Council discuss creation of joint digital tools
Weekly review of Azerbaijani precious metals market
EU rep should follow int'l law before meeting with separatist in Karabakh - expert
Potential areas of Turkmenistan’s interaction within Visegrad Group+Central Asia framework identified
Georgia reports 1,219 new coronavirus cases for April 17
Georgia holds auction for privatization of state property
Azerbaijani MP talks about spring session of IPA CIS held in Russia's St. Petersburg
Georgia continues to conduct research on Namakhvani HPP
Iran unveils details exports from Maragheh County
Kazakhstan reveals total number of TEU containers shipped along Aktau-Baku feeder line
There have always been good grape varieties in Pirshaghi – white and black Shani - President Aliyev
Participants of Azercell Student Bursary and Internship Programs share their success stories
Iran boosts aluminum ingots production
Azerbaijani police find mortar shells, detonators left by Armenia in Gubadly (VIDEO)
Iran declares amount of loans issued to SMEs
Kazakhstan's revenues from road cargo transportation down
Concept of ensuring security of Afghan section of TAPI signed
Members of Albanian-Udi Christian religious community of Azerbaijan visit liberated Khojavand (PHOTO)
Australia to continue review of COVID vaccinations - health minister
Italian media outlets highlight speech of Azerbaijani president at int'l conference in Baku
Kazakhstan decreases import of Ukraine-made goods y-o-y
Kazakh national atomic company's subsidiary opens tender to buy compressors
Azerbaijan sets up structure to work on urban planning in liberated lands
Kazakhstan's oil & gas company opens tender to develop consolidated time standards
Meeting of EU special rep with so-called "FM of Karabakh" promotes separatism, says Azerbaijani expert
Iranian currency rates for April 17
Iran to increase vaccinations as fourth wave of COVID-19 rises
Iran reaches target uranium enrichment
Oil demand to keep on rising in May, June 2021
Work on provision of electricity to Azerbaijan's liberated Sugovushan nearing completion
Bulgaria sees Georgia as valuable partner
Significant number of Georgian citizens register for employment program in Israel
Kazakhstan’s COVID-19 caseload up by 2,822
Ukraine receives first batch of Pfizer vaccine under COVAX initiative
All news