EdelsteinFlash 90

Soroka Hospital in Be'er Sheva physician Prof. Ruthi Shako Levy called on the public to take active measures to avoid isolation before last night's demonstration in Tel Aviv's Rabin Square.

The doctor wrote on Facebook, "Whoever comes tonight and doesn't want to go into isolation for two weeks should do himself a favor and leave his smartphone at home."

The Health Minister's Chief of Staff Kobi Tzoref filed a complaint with the Complaints Commissioner, claiming it is "a serious post encouraging violating the law in a way that endangers the public."

Meanwhile, a team of Hebrew University of Jerusalem researchers today recommended the government wait until the weekend to see if raising awareness, wearing masks, and closing event halls have helped limit coronavirus contagion.

"There is some stabilization in the pace of the epidemic, but it is still not sufficient. At the current rate of doubling, a decision on tightening mitigation measures will be required at the beginning of the week of July 19, to curb deterioration that could lead to the health system failing to withstand the load - from widespread regional closures to full closure," the researchers write. "A complete ban on gatherings in all closed structures must be ensured. We should wait until this weekend to allow for examining the impact of the mitigation measures taken from July 2nd onward."

The researchers signed on the document are Prof. Yinon Ashkenazi, Prof. Ran Nirpaz (Hadassah Hospital), Prof. Doron Gazit, Prof. Ronit Calderon-Margalit, Dr. Michael Assaf and Prof. Nadav Katz - from the Rokach Institute of Physics and School of Public Health at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Their outlook is still bleak: "The rate of increase of respiratory-supported inpatients is rising, similar to the rate of increase in the number of new patients. Since the beginning of April, this index has also reliably predicted expected mortality and hospital congestion (the forecast allows for an additional 100 deaths by the end of July)," they wrote.

According to the researchers, the decisive factor for them is the number of patients in moderate-severe condition, and regarding this they say there are about a week of tests left: "The effect on the index of respiratory-supported patients (moderate+severe) is delayed by 10-13 days in relation to changing pandemic trends (that are an outcome, for instance, of taking mitigation measures)."