The Ministry of Health reported recently that more than 1.8 million Israeli citizens have already been vaccinated against COVID-19, with more than 70 percent of those aged 60 and over in Israel included. There are concerns, however, about the distribution of those vaccinations throughout the country.
A new 'traffic light' model created by Technion researchers in collaboration with the IDF Medical Corps classifies Israeli cities as either red, yellow, or green, based on the rate of vaccinations relative to the total population, allowing easy interpretation of the data and advancing the government's 'Back to Business' plan.
The map was created by the researchers Gil Caspi, Avshalom Dayan, Oren Caspi, and Yael Eshel from the Technion and Dr. Avi Shina from the IDF Medical Corps, and is based on data from the Ministry of Health which sorts the vaccinated citizens by age and place of residence. The resultant values and averages, intended to help focus the national vaccination effort, are determined by calculating the number of those aged 60 and over receiving vaccinations, then apportioning that number among the total population of the area in question.
The vaccination map shows that the Haredi cities, which have suffered relatively high rates of infection, are classified as "red" cities with a relatively low vaccination rate. Modi'in Illit, Betar Illit, Kiryat Ya'arim, Beit Shemesh, and Bnei Brak all fall into this category.
The Arab sector is hardly any better, with Arab cities such as Nazareth, Shefar'am, Isfahiya, Dalit al-Carmel, Beit Jen, and Peki'in all labeled as red zones. Central cities such as Tel Aviv, Ramat Gan, Ramat Hasharon, Netanya, Bat Yam, Rishon Lezion, and Pardes Hanna, on the other hand, have been dubbed green zones. Still indeterminate yellow areas are places like Ashdod, Ma'ale Adumim, Mevaseret Zion, Kiryat Gat, Netivot, Tiberias, Tira, and Umm al-Fahm; while they are not dangerous, there is still room for improvement.
"Our vaccination campaign is both quick and efficient," Dr. Oren Caspi emphasized. "We have created an index that allows us to precisely direct each round of vaccinations, aiming to increase the number of adults vaccinated per capita in every city."