↓ SCROLL TO SEE MORE ↑

What are you looking for?

News

Turkey battles pandemic as death rates rise

Turkey battles pandemic as death rates rise

In Turkey, the daily number of COVID-19 cases is over 17,000, but daily mortality have surpassed 250. The concerning figures come amid a rising number of the vaccinated, which reached 93.2 million doses. Experts link the high numbers despite vaccination to the “unvaccinated.” Indeed, most hospitals report that the majority of their current COVID-19 patients are people who did not have both their doses.

Professor Hasan Murat Gündüz, a member of the Coronavirus Scientific Advisory Board of the Health Ministry, highlights that the virus is now spreading among the unvaccinated. Also serving as chief physician at Balcalı Hospital in the southern province of Adana, Gündüz said COVID-19 patients at the hospital are mostly unvaccinated people. “We see the vaccines protect people against, at least, hospitalization with the virus,” he told Anadolu Agency (AA) Sunday. He also warned that Turkey might face new variants if the virus continues spreading in the country.

Turkey lifted almost all restrictions related to the coronavirus pandemic in July following a COVID-19 lockdown but at the same time, expanded its vaccination program step by step. Most recently, it opened up vaccinations for people at the age of 15. A false sense of relief following the relaxation of restrictions is believed to be the culprit for a sudden surge in the cases, which recently climbed above 20,000 daily. This “relief” prompted people to ditch mandatory masks and social distancing rules, experts say. However, the real factor in driving up the cases is the lack of vaccination among nearly 18 million people, who now face infection with the delta variant that accounts for the majority of cases in the country.

Gündüz said people likely dropped their guard against the coronavirus, by ignoring masks and social distancing during the summer.

Associate professor Ümit Savaşçı, an infectious diseases expert, echoes the same figures indicating the number of unvaccinated patients being treated for the coronavirus. Savaşçı, who works at Gülhane Training and Research Hospital of Health Sciences University in the capital Ankara, told Demirören News Agency (DHA) that the number of patients below the age of 40 increased at their hospital. He added that they were seeing more and more people at the age of 65 and above being hospitalized and taken to intensive care, even if they had their two doses of inactive vaccine.

Turkey offers an inactive vaccine and a messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccine to the public. “We had less severe cases in the past but during the past 15 days, we struggled to find a spot at intensive care for patients. The primary reason for this situation is the unvaccinated. I remember a 21-year-old man who was the only person infected in a family where all other members were vaccinated, while he skipped his vaccine,” he said.

Savaşçı said almost all cases were of the delta variant. “They have a higher risk of infecting others and we see the protection of inactive vaccines against the variant being low,” he said.

News

Turkiye’s Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH) helped over 124,000 orphans in 2021. According to a statement by the group on Tuesday, it has provided monthly...

News

An international group of researchers have found a gene variant that protects against severe COVID-19 infections. Researchers at the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden, the...

News

Turkey reported nearly 65,000 cases of COVID-19 on Monday. The ministry reported 64,935 new COVID-19 cases, 162 deaths, and 72,106 recoveries over the past...

News

Passenger traffic at Istanbul airports increased by 22 million last year compared to 2020. According to the European Organization for the Safety of Air...

News

Coronavirus pandemic data for the first week of January revealed the rise of the omicron wave in Turkey. Eskişehir in central Turkey and the...

News

Over 139M coronavirus vaccine shots given in Turkiye to date, according to official figures released on Saturday. More than 57.2 million people have recieved...

News

Unemployment to stay above pre-COVID levels until ‘at least’ 2023, the International Labor Organization (ILO) head said on Monday. At a UN press conference,...

News

Despite the high number of cases, strong momentum in Turkey’s vaccination program and fewer coronavirus hospitalizations have prompted the relaxing of another pandemic-related measure....