Vecdi Erbay / DUVAR
The medical chamber of the southeastern province of Diyarbakır has said an average of 2,000 positive COVID-19 cases is being currently registered per pay in the province, which puts an increasing burden on hospitals. Fifteen people die in the province on average per day due to the virus.
Despite the warnings of health officials and NGOs, the infection numbers have skyrocketed in the province after July 1, when Turkey eased all of the virus-related measures.
In the face of recent infection rates, the Health Ministry suspended annual leave for all health workers in Diyarbakır until further notice.
Local authorities and NGOs have been calling citizens in the province to get their jabs as soon as possible, but their efforts are turning futile as Diyarbakır is one of the provinces with the lowest rate of vaccination.
“The pandemic's destructive effects are continuing in Diyarbakır...Approximately an average of 2,000 positive cases is being recorded in the city per day. The rising case numbers have also reflected on the hospitals; the number of hospitalized patients is increasing every day. The previously closed serviced have reopened again,” said Dr. Elif Turan, the chair of the Diyarbakır Medical Chamber.
She said that 80-90 percent of the hospitalized COVID-19 patients in the province were unvaccinated, while the remaining patients had received only their first jabs.
Turan called on citizens to get vaccinated as soon as possible, saying: “The research shows that the vaccinated get over the disease in a lighter way. To tackle the pandemic in a more comfortable way, we have to get vaccinated.”
Daily cases in Turkey have surged from a low of just over 4,000 in early July to over 20,000 for the last two weeks since authorities relaxed pandemic-related restrictions.
As of Aug. 11, half of Turkish adults have received at least two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said.
The minister also stressed that vaccination is a duty that cannot be left to choice anymore.