Iran’s coronavirus cases surge again as strategic province becomes new epicenter
While the epidemic was initially concentrated in the capital, Tehran, and the holy city of Qom, the new flare-up has largely been centered in Khuzestan province, an oil-rich region in Iran’s southwest.
There, an ethnic Arab minority, which has long complained of discrimination, has at times balked at central government control. Doctors and residents say that widespread disregard for public health restrictions in Khuzestan has helped fuel the pathogen’s spread.
“The numbers are really high now. Most people can’t find masks, and no one has been taking social distancing seriously,” said a pediatrician at the Nezam Mafi hospital in the city of Dezful, one of the centers of Khuzestan’s outbreak. She spoke on the condition of anonymity to more freely discuss conditions in the area.
In her hospital alone, she said, at least 40 staff members tested positive for the virus, and the intensive care unit was shuttered as a result.
A relative lack of infrastructure has undercut efforts to address the public health emergency in the …continued .
[Source: Washington Post]