Israel's Public Health Chief resigns amid surge in new COVID-19 cases
- 08 July 2020
The Israeli Health Ministry's director for public health services Siegal Sadetzki announced on Tuesday she would step down over criticism of the government's way of handling the coronavirus outbreak amid a sharp increase in new cases, APA reports quoting Sputnik.
Sadetzki commended the way the government handled the outbreak before the reopening of the economy, but was very critical about what happened after.
"[...], I have reached the conclusion that, given the new conditions that have been created, in which my professional opinion is not accepted, I can no longer effectively assist in halting the spread of the virus", Sadetzki said in a statement, as quoted by the Haaretz daily.
More specifically, the ex-official believes that the first phase was a success because it "put people's lives before any other consideration," while the second phase was about a quick reopening of the economy.
"The achievements of the first wave were cancelled out by the broad, quick opening of the economy. The transition to the second phase in Israel was much more extensive and faster than in other Western countries", he said. "The atmosphere in which the illness was addressed and the way decisions were made changed fundamentally, and the results became apparent with the sharp increase in the infection curve".
The daily increase in the number of coronavirus cases in Israel has gone acutely up over the past week, more than doubling the number since reopening to steadily over 1,000 per day.
Israel's cumulative toll, as of Tuesday, has reached 31,886 confirmed cases, including 342 deaths and 18,192 recoveries.