Istanbul, coronavirus pandemic

Istanbul accumulates 40% of coronavirus infections

Istanbul currently has 5 times more coronavirus infections than Ankara, and the number of positives has tripled since September.

The number of coronavirus infections in Istanbul, the most populous city in Turkey with about 16 million inhabitants, represents 40% of the total positive cases detected throughout the country, as highlighted on Thursday by Health Minister Fahrettin Koca, who also pointed out that the Turkish metropolis has 5 times more positives than Ankara, despite the fact that the capital once was the epicentre of the pandemic in Turkey.

“We have increased the follow-up of contacts and the number of tests (in Istanbul),” Koca reported through social media after holding a meeting on Thursday with the governor of Istanbul, the city’s police chief, and other authorities and experts in health and epidemiology.

“In the fight against the pandemic, right now we do not have a better weapon than the measures that (citizens) follow. The importance of the mask has increased, but we face our toughest test in the crowds,” he wrote on Twitter.

Coronavirus cases triple in Bursa

On the other hand, during an appearance before journalists after visiting the province of Bursa, located northwest of Turkey and one of the most populated in the country, the Minister of Health warned that cases of coronavirus are increasing again throughout Turkey, including in Bursa, where infections from the new SARS-CoV-2 virus have increased threefold compared to just a month ago. In the last 24 hours, infections again exceeded 2,000 daily cases.

On the other hand, in statements to the Milliyet newspaper, Professor Tufan Tükek, dean of the Istanbul University School of Medicine, warned that the number of positives in Istanbul hospitals has tripled in the last month. Tütek underlined that the positivity rate has increased to 35%, while in June and July it was only 5%; however, the said rate increased to 12% in August, and to 15% in September. “The outlook is not very good,” he concluded.