Despite being the most vaccinated nation on the planet, Israel’s cases have begun to skyrocket again after travellers brought the Delta strain back home from overseas.
The nation of 9.2 million, boasting a 78 per cent double vaccination rate, registered over 6,500 cases this week.
After reopening society following a successful vaccination campaign, the country is now being forced to reintroduce caps on public gatherings and bump up hospital staff in preparation for another uncontrollable wave of Covid patients.
Deaths have increased from five in June to at least 248 so far in August, with officials warning hospitals will begin to struggle once the country hits 1,000 serious hospitalisations.
Top doctors in Israel have confirmed half of Israel’s 600 hospitalised Covid-19 patients had received a double dose at least five months ago. While most of these patients are over 60 and have co-morbidities, concerns have been raised over the effectiveness of vaccines over long periods of time.
Countries with high vaccination rates and a recent spike in Delta infections, such as the US and UK, have also reported similar trends. In the UK, roughly 35 per cent of Delta hospitalisations in recent weeks had received two doses of a Covid-19 vaccine.
149,144 Israelis have now been given a third shot of Pfizer.
“The triple dose is the solution to curbing the current infection outbreak,” Anat Ekka Zohar of Maccabi said in a statement.
As a result of the new findings, the US government has announced a booster shot campaign for September for anyone who is now eight months after their second shot. The UK has also promised citizens boosters.