10,000 healthcare workers infected with coronavirus in Iran
The coronavirus has infected more than 10,000 health care workers in hard-hit Iran, news outlets reported Thursday.
The report carried by semiofficial news agencies, including ISNA, cited Deputy Health Minister Qassem Janbabaei, who did not elaborate.
However, reports earlier in the week put the number of infected health care workers at only 800. Iran says more than 100 of those workers have died.
Iran on Thursday put the number of dead from the virus at 7,249, or 66 more than Wednesday.
Health Ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour said there were more than 129,000 confirmed cases of the virus, including 2,392 more than Wednesday.
Iran has the highest number of casualties from the disease in the region.
Symptoms of the Covid-19 disease in Iran have shifted from respiratory to gastrointestinal manifestations, Iranian epidemiologists have observed.
The disease caused by the novel coronavirus first emerged in China's Hubei province late last year, and has been marked by a number of respiratory symptoms, including high fevers, coughing and shortness of breath.
But as the months press on, doctors and epidemiologists across the world are identifying new indicators of the Covid-19 disease, such as a lack of taste or smell.
Epidemiologists in Iran have observed a shift of symptoms in coronavirus patients requiring hospitalisation, Radio Farda reported on Tuesday.
"Covid-19 had symptoms such as coughs, shortness of breath and high fever before. These symptoms were observed in the first two months after the outbreak.
But now the most important symptoms of Covid-19 are gastrointestinal," Dr. Mohammad-Reza Mahboubfar, a viral epidemiologist and member of Iran's Coronavirus Taskforce, said.
Such gastrointestinal symptoms include acute diarrhoea, stomachaches, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, abdominal spasms, low fever, and loss of taste and/or smell, Mahboubfar said, and have been observed in patients of all ages.
These symptoms are often accompanied by a low fever, or even no fever at all, causing a delay in diagnosis of the Covid-19 disease. Such a delay can cause the further spread of the coronavirus among others in the general population.