Virus cases increasing among young people in Turkey, says health minister
Turkey has seen a surge in the coronavirus cases in recent weeks, prompting the government to tighten some of the curbs, including the reintroduction of full weekend lockdowns in very-high-risk provinces.
The number of daily COVID-19 infections has been hovering above 30,000 since March 27. Turkey recorded 44,756 new coronavirus cases on April 3, the highest level in the country since the beginning of the pandemic.
“The share of people aged 65 and above among the recorded active virus cases has declined to 11.3 percent from 14.4 percent over the past month but young people’s share in active cases is rising,” Koca wrote on Twitter on April 4.
“We will protect our young people, too,” the minister added.
The ministry also released the weekly coronavirus infection rates across the country, which showed that the number of cases per 100,000 people increased in all 81 provinces between March 27 and April 2.
The Black Sea province of Samsun continued to have the highest weekly case total with 678 per 100,000 people while the rate was 591 in Istanbul, the country’s largest city, up from 401 in the previous week.
The number of cases per 100,000 people was 272 in the capital Ankara, rising from 184, and 218 in the western province of İzmir from 156 last week.
In the face of the rising cases, the government last week announced a raft of measures to bring the outbreak under control.
As part of those actions, weekend curfews started at 9 p.m. on April 2 nationwide. However, curfews’ duration varied depending on how a province is categorized.
In low- and medium-risk provinces, the curfew took effect from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday while in the very-high-risk provinces the lockdown was in place from 9 p.m. on April 2 to 5 a.m. on April 5.
Full nationwide weekend lockdowns will also be implemented for the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, which starts on April 13.