Almost all COVID measures to be lifted next week as Israel ‘returns to normal’
Health Ministry says almost all COVID-19 restrictions will be lifted next week
Health Minister Yuli Edelstein will not ask the government to extend existing COVID-19 restrictions in Israel when they expire on June 1, meaning the country will no longer need proof of vaccination or social distancing in public spaces.
The development comes as just 27 average daily cases have been diagnosed nationwide in the past week, and active cases drop to just 510.
However, the health ministry said face masks in closed spaces will still be needed, and a final decision on the matter will be made within the next two weeks.
Additionally, the country’s entry and exit limits will remain in place and potentially even be made more stringent to prevent the potential entry of new COVID variants.
“Israel is returning to normal,” Edelstein said. “Less than six months ago, we launched the vaccination campaign. Thanks to the excellent work of the workers in the health care system… we carried out the best vaccination campaign in the world. We have long reaped our reward with low morbidity.
“Now, to my great joy, the situation allows us to cancel the use of the green collar and the restrictions of the“ purple collar ”,” he adds.
But, he says, the return to normal comes with an “asterisk.”
“The Ministry of Health is working to keep morbidity low and will continue to monitor the situation comprehensively to avoid an epidemic. Of course, if there is an epidemic, we will have to go back. “
Edelstein urges Israelis not to travel to countries with high disease rates and to stick to distancing rules when they are abroad.