In the past month, Morocco’s COVID-19 death toll has nearly doubled, and the number of patients in intensive care has significantly increased.
Rabat – Morocco’s Head of Government, Saad Eddine El Othmani, said Thursday that the evolution of the COVID-19 pandemic in Morocco is “worrying.”
During a government council session on August 6, El Othmani said recent developments of the epidemiological situation in Morocco require heightened caution and vigilance, according to Morocco’s state media.
The official underlined the rapid spread of the virus and the increase in COVID-19-related deaths. He also noted the spike in patients in need of intensive care, “the number of which reached 108 people on Wednesday, against only 19 previously.”
Moroccans must act seriously and take all necessary measures to keep the situation from worsening, El Othmani stressed.
In the past month, the country’s COVID-19 case count has more than doubled and the death toll is almost twice that of the beginning of July.
On July 6, the country reported a total of 14,379 cases, 237 deaths, and 10,173 recoveries.
As of August 6, Morocco has confirmed 29,644 cases, 449 deaths, and 20,553 recoveries.
The Ministry of Health called the week from July 27 to August 2 the “worst” since the COVID-19 pandemic emerged in Morocco in March. During this period, 69 Moroccan COVID-19 patients died. A health ministry representative also said that the number of patients in critical care increased during the week.
More Moroccan regions and provinces are witnessing a surge in cases, the ministry source added. During the same period, 22 Moroccan prefectures and provinces recorded more than 7 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people, a rate that the health ministry considers “alarming.”
El Othmani appealed to all stakeholders and citizens, emphasizing that “responsibility is individual and collective […] everyone must contribute positively to the fight against this pandemic, by adhering to preventive measures and adopting [cautious] behavior.”
The head of government also raised the importance of wearing face masks in public to prevent the spread of the virus.
He added that the government council will adopt a decree-law simplifying the procedures for collecting fines from violators of the mandatory mask law. Doing so, he said, will improve efficiency in enforcing the law.
Wearing face masks in public became mandatory in Morocco on April 7 to curb the spread of COVID-19. However, since the country began easing lockdown measures and the weather began heating up, respect for this preventive measure has notably declined.
The Moroccan government has reiterated on several occasions that the rule is still mandatory. Violators may face prison sentences ranging from one to three months and a fine between $29 and $126, or one of these two penalties.