Despite that between Tuesday and Wednesday of this week Iran witnessed its biggest ever single-day spike in Covid-19 cases, authorities are still struggling to get everyone to observe quarantine and self-isolation measures, especially after throngs of hardline Shia demonstrators have gathered to protest the closure of two of the country's holiest shrines in the city of Qom.
Toward this end, Iran's Health Ministry spokesman Kianush Jahanpur made an astounding statement to put things in perspective, saying the current soaring numbers show that—
"In Iran, every ten minutes one person dies from the coronavirus, 50 get infected."
He added in the Twitter statement "And every 10 minutes one person dies."
#Iran’s Health Ministry’s Spokesman: Every hour 50 Iranians contract #Covid19 and every 10 minutes 1 dies. Keep this data in your mind and think twice when you decide to visit relatives in Nowruz or travel to other cities. https://t.co/BBbYwv6czM— Fereshteh Sadeghi فرشته صادقی (@fresh_sadegh) March 19, 2020
He further urged citizens to think about this extreme risk every time they break national directives and go out to visit people or travel to other cities.
This as on Thursday the national number of cases climbed to 18,407 — a jump of 1,046 cases from the day prior.
The death toll in Iran from the coronavirus outbreak has risen to 1,284, state media reported on Thursday, among those 149 people dying of the virus in the last 24 hours, with 1,046 new cases emerging.
Earlier this week another top health official issued an 'extreme scenario' warning in order to urge citizens to stay home, saying he expects "millions" of Iranians to die of the disease.
Among other drastic measures the country has implemented, Tehran says it's now temporarily sent some 85,000 prisoners home to ensure the pandemic doesn't rip through the nation's overcrowded prisons and jails.
Some countries in the West, including cities across the United States, are actually considering the temporary release of non-violent offenders from local jails for the sake of preventing the spread.