Coronavirus transmission rate not slowing, warns Turkish health minister
Turkey’s health minister has warned that there is no slowing down in the transmission rate of COVID-19, while an expert suggested that stricter rules nationwide may be imposed to arrest the spread of the coronavirus.
“More than 60 people lost their lives [over past 24 hours]. We cannot fight one by one, but together we can win,” Health Minister Fahrettin Koca wrote on Twitter on Sept. 14, and urged people to follow the protective measures to fight the virus in unity.
Koca on Sept. 14 held separate online meetings with the heads of the health departments of the provinces of Ankara, İzmir, Kayseri, Çankırı and Adıyaman to discuss the reasons behind the spike in the infections and intensive care units capacities at those cities’ hospitals as well as additional measures.
Associate Professor Afşin Emre Kayıpmaz from the Health Ministry’s Science Board has pointed out the number of new cases and patients in critical condition have been on the rise, warning that the autumn will be more challenging in the fight against COVID-19 as people will have to spend more time in closed spaces.
“On the upside, face mask use and social distancing this year will help to contain seasonal respiratory infections,” Kayıpmaz told daily Hürriyet.
Kayıpmaz, however, warned that if the public behaves reluctant to adhere to the COVID-19 rules, imposing stricter nationwide measures could be considered.
The government recently announced a set of curbs in the face of the spike in virus cases.
Wearing masks were made obligatory in all areas, including streets, parks, gardens, picnic areas, beaches, workplaces, and factories. Curbs on weddings and public transport were also introduced.