Covid-19 Delta variant alarming in Kirkuk

Kirkuk 2021- One of the 33 outlets for Covid-19 vaccination in Kirkuk. KirkukNow

By KirkukNow

Kirkuk heath officials warn of Delta variant of Covid-19 as the province passes an alarming week as cases double.

Nabil Hamdi Boushnaq, director of Kirkuk health, said on July 19 Delta variant of Covid-19 is widespread in Kirku.

"The virus spreads rapidly. Though we have no special kit for detecting Delta but we can tell since it is quickly spreading and its symptoms are clear," Boushnaq said.

Boushnaq said in the beginning of July there were only 100 positive cases a day "yet now we register 250 cases a day plus 10-15 deaths a week."

On July 20th, Kirkuk has registered 323 cases out of 8922 all over Iraq, ministry of health said in its daily updates about Covid-19.

"We are in a hard condition since a week, the most difficult we have witnessed in 2021 as the cases are in rise," Boushnaq added.

We are in a hard condition since a week, the most difficult we have witnessed in 2021

Iraq has registered about 18,000 cases out of 1,510,000 cases since February 2020.

Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi chaired a meeting of high committee for health & safety on Tuesday where he decided to impose compulsory masking in public places as Iraq faces third wave of Covid-19, Iraqi PM Media office said.

The Iraqi security forces ISF are tasked to impose recommendations of this meeting. From next week, civil servants will attend office in two shifts, each three days in order to curb the third wave of the pandemic.

"We call on people to follow precautionary procedures during Eid days. Skipping it and avoid vaccination leads to more cases," Boushanq urged the Kirkukis to register for vaccination.

Kirkuk heath directorate has decided to keep the vaccination outlets open during Eid Al-Adha days, July 20-23rd. Labs will be testing serious cases and ward ready to receive new cases.

Since May, the Iraqi government has eased restrictions to curb Covid-19’s second wave by lifting weekend full curfew and opening doors for class education.

On Monday, the ministry of health has proposed a set of recommendation to council of ministers to limit the pandemic by imposing a full or partial lockdown for 14 days, and closure of public places like malls, restaurants and cafes. One of its recommendations was to reduce number of employees to 25%.  

Out of 1.2 million in Iraq, about 42,000 Kirkukis received Covid-19 jab that Iraq joined in March.

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