Emine Algan reports: Infectious disease experts warned that the Turkish Health Ministry should eliminate hydroxychloroquine from their official COVID-19 treatment plan immediately, as the drug has been dismissed by global authorities. Hydroxychloroquine can cause heart rhythm disorder of up to 20 percent, which can cause sudden heart failure, one expert noted.
Health workers in Ankara are instructed to prioritize patients they defined as VIP, often connections of local politicians or Health Ministry workers, daily BirGün reported. Ambulance drivers and paramedics reported being redirected to VIP patients by dispatch even if the "patient" doesn't need transportation to the hospital, or are asymptomatic.
Turkey's Foundations Directorate General has failed to implement COVID-19 measures despite 30 diagnoses in the building, daily Cumhuriyet reported. The headquarter for the institution is located in Ankara, where the pandemic has spread extensively.
Adverts offering COVID-19 testing that yields results in three hours have been circulating Turkish capital Ankara as the city observed a spike in daily diagnoses and deaths. Meanwhile, legitimate laboratories say that no such test exists.
The COVID-19 pandemic has surged to the same intensity as the first two weeks of the outbreak, Turkish Medical Association (TTB) Chair Sinan Adıyaman said. Meanwhile, chaos could erupt in the winter months as the national health budget becomes strained to the point of bankruptcy, the former chairman of Ankara Medical Association said.
Culture and Tourism Ministry said that theater, opera and ballet performances in Turkey were excluded from provincial health boards' new measures against COVID-19. The ministry's statement came after widespread protest from artists for the inclusion of art performances in an earlier set of restrictions.
The number of both active COVID-19 patients and those in critical care have been increasing, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said on Sept. 15. Turkey observed 67 deaths and the number of patients receiving critical care rose to 1,327 on the same day.
Founder of Democracy and Progress Party (DEVA) Ali Babacan's father is in critical care for COVID-19, he said on Sept. 14, on the chairman's third week with the virus. Babacan's wife and son also got infected, but recovered at home, while his father-in-law was also hospitalized, he said.
A recent survey by poller Ipsos revealed that an overwhelming majority of 90 percent want Ankara to implement either partial or nationwide curfews against COVID-19. A majority of the 87 percent who want a curfew opted for a nationwide implementation rather than a partial one.
Two school principals in the central Anatolian province of Konya died from COVID-19 on Sept. 13, a week before schools are due to open in Turkey. The Health Ministry reported 57 COVID-19 deaths overall on the same day, as well as 1,527 additional diagnoses.
Ten coronavirus cases have emerged from TV and film sets in Turkey within a month as many sets are not following precautions established to combat the pandemic, according to the Cinema Workers Union (Sine-Sen).
A woman wore a plastic bag over her outfit to hug the newlyweds at a northern Turkey wedding. The woman, 56, and her husband, 58, both have chronic illnesses, but really care for the couple and wanted to hug, she said.
The Turkish government has been cracking down on the implementation of COVID-19 precautions, fining violators and even forcing quarantine in public dormitories in some provinces. The number of new diagnoses has been on the rise in Turkey, where 55 COVID-19 patients died on Sept. 9.
The southeastern Turkey province of Mardin will be "marking" COVID-19 patients and their close encounters with mandatory wristbands, the governor's office said. The province will fine anyone who takes off their wristband, as it was found to be a violation of the public health code.
Turkish Medical Association (TTB) Chairman Sinan Adıyaman said that the COVID-19 pandemic was out of control in Turkey, and urged restrictions to social mobility. The chairman said that the capital has had more than 2,000 daily diagnoses for a long time now.