In the second week of the fourth wave of the coronavirus in Iran, the number of patients reached about 25,000 and the number of deaths reached more than 400 per day, and now in these conditions, Tehran has the highest share of prevalence, deaths, and hospitalizations. Tehran is in a super-red situation and its situation becomes more critical with every passing week.
Alireza Zali, the head of the coronavirus taskforce in Tehran, has warned about the dangerous situation in Tehran in recent days. He is worried about the prevalence of the so-called UK strain of the virus in Tehran in the future. In an interview with the state-run daily Iran, he spoke about the reason for the crashing and heavy wave of the fourth coronavirus in Tehran and stressed that the balance of hospitalization index for discharged patients in Tehran is still negative and the city has entered into an unequal battle with the virus.
He added: “In Tehran (April 16), the number of outpatients in the health sector was 14,800. This number is higher than all previous periods and rises. The highest number recorded in previous periods usually reached a maximum of 12,000.
“Second point. We have to admit that the number of infections is not real because a large part of our patients with symptoms of fever, respiratory and infectious diseases go to the clinics before going to the health departments. About 70 to 80 percent of the services are provided in the clinics. It is expected that this number will be much higher in the field of outpatients.
“Next point, today in Tehran province alone, we admitted 1,775 new patients. This is a very large number. Of this number, more than 250 people were hospitalized in the intensive care units. This shows the large number of patients in Tehran. Today, 200 patients were hospitalized due to ill health, indicating the severity of the disease in Tehran.
“We also had a new record in Tehran, reaching a total of 7,400 hospitalized people. When we compare this number with the previous day, we see that the number is increasing in less than 24 hours. In the most difficult conditions and in the worst days of November last year, the total number of hospitalizations never reached 7,000, which shows that this time the wave is more crashing and heavier than the previous ones, and a large volume of hospital beds have quickly been occupied in Tehran.
“Next point: In Tehran, we reached a negative balance in the number of hospitalizations. Every time in Tehran the hospitalization rate exceeds the discharge rate for it is because of two important reasons. First, when discharge decreases, it indicates our critically ill patients, i.e. the need for hospital stay has increased. And second, as discharge decreases, the floating capacity to use the beds for new patients is limited. This balance has been negative since April 3.”
And about one of the reasons of this situation which of course is not reflecting all the government neglect and deliberate mismanagement, he said:
“Tehran has a population which is the equivalent of 5 to 6 other provinces. Only the 4 urban areas of Tehran have a population of about one million, i.e., one area of 22 urban areas equals one province with a population of 800,000 people, i.e., a population in Tehran equal to the population of a province is moving underground and use the subway. In the discussion of public transportation, we faced a challenge. Although the municipality of Tehran has cooperated from the first day in disinfection and screening of drivers, redistribution of subway lines and all measures were taken, but the main problem is the lack of buses and wagons.”
Nader Tavakoli, the deputy director of treatment for the coronavirus taskforce in the Tehran metropolis, said about the situation of the coronavirus epidemic: “This seems to be the case for another week. The number of coronavirus patients referred to hospitals is very high, and we should be able to set up coronavirus specialized and outpatient clinics to accommodate better patients. Normally, Tehran should be closed for 10 days, which means that most activities should be stopped, like the conditions we had on Nowruz, so that we can control the epidemic chain to some extent.” (State-run daily Salam-e-No, April 19)