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Turkey’s Social Services and Health Workers’ Union (SES) has said that Ankara currently has approximately 50,000 coronavirus cases, basing this figure on the number of patients each family physician in the capital is monitoring for suspected COVID-19 infection.

“There are 1,700 family physicians in 450 family health centers in our province, which gives us the number of [COVID-19] positive patients or those who have come into contact with a patient. It is known that two thirds of people monitored by family physicians for COVID-19 are positive cases. This situation shows that the total number of positive cases in our province is about 50,000,” the SES’ Ankara branch said in a statement.

The SES said that of these 50,000 patients, 3,500 were currently in hospitals receiving treatment. Some 200 of these hospitalized patients are currently in intensive care unit, it said.

The SES said that the disease has already strained the Turkish health system and with fall, “more serious problems” will arise. “The ruling government did not take the necessary social and financial measures in factories, streets and public institutions. It put the responsibility of the increasing cases on the citizens’ behaviors,” it said.

The SES’ statement came after the Ankara Medical Chamber said last week said that the daily number of COVID-19 infections just in the capital is around 1,000, disputing the official data released by the Health Ministry every day. The government puts the daily nationwide tally of new cases at around the same level.

Turkey confirms 1,193 new cases of COVID-19

Meanwhile, Turkey on Aug. 10 confirmed 1,193 additional cases of COVID-19, raising the tally to 241,997, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca announced. The death toll stood at 5,858 after 14 more people died over the last 24 hours, he said.

“The daily test count is close to its highest level [so far] during the pandemic. The ratio of active patients aged 60 and over to the total patients ranges between 20-25% in the country. Gümüşhane and Uşak have the highest ratios in this respect,” Koca wrote on Twitter.