TASS, March 30. Aide to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for ultra-Orthodox community affairs Rivka Paluch has contracted the novel coronavirus, Times of Israel reports Sunday.
According to the newspaper, Paluch, 64, had to take the coronavirus test after her husband tested positive and was hospitalized. The paper adds that the adviser last contacted Netanyahu on Thursday, but the prime minister’s administration reassured that the necessary distance was observed during the meeting. A source in Netanyahu’s office informed that the leader might require a 14-day self-isolation in accordance with the national Health Ministry’s recommendations.
No details on Paluch’s condition are shared.
By Sunday evening, Israel had 4,247 confirmed coronavirus cases, while 89 people recovered and 15 patients died from the virus.
The Israeli government approved stricter quarantine measures for 7 days starting with March 25. In particular, Israeli citizens are recommended to stay in their homes unless absolutely necessary, prohibited from venturing outside more than 100 meters away from their residences, taxis are not allowed to transport more than one passenger at once, while public gatherings and sports classes are banned. No more than two people at a time can drive in a personal vehicle and only to grocery stores, supermarkets, pharmacies or to receive medical care. People are also cleared to drive to their workplaces if they are cleared to do so.
In late December 2019, Chinese authorities notified the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus - named COVID-19 by the WHO - have been reported in more than 160 countries, including Russia.
The WHO on March 11 declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. As of now, more than 710,000 people have been infected around the world and over 33,000 have died.