An Israeli woman died on Tuesday from COVID-19, and health officials suspect she was infected with the Omicron variant. If they can confirm this, she would be the first death from the new coronavirus variant in Israel.
Hospital officials said the woman was fully vaccinated with a booster shot (third dose) against COVID-19.
Israel’s rate of new daily infections shot over 3,000 this week for the first time in many months, again putting Israel in a dilemma over whether or not to impose new restrictions on the public.
But while infection rates are on the rise, hospitalizations remain relatively low, at least for the time being. Just 85 people are hospitalized in serious condition with COVID-19, and only two of them are confirmed to be carrying the Omicron variant.
Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has vowed to continue his aggressive vaccination campaign as well as targeted restrictions, while doing everything in his power to avoid a full lockdown.
“Our goal is to leave the economy open and market open and stores open as much as possible, while avoiding stretching hospitals beyond capacity. If we wanted, we could have locked down, but nobody wants that,” he told reporters on Tuesday.