Turkey reports 1,538 new COVID-19 cases, 68 deaths

Turkey reported 1,538 new COVID-19 cases and 68 deaths over the past 24 hours Saturday evening, while the number of daily recoveries stood at 1,312.

According to daily data released by the ministry, about 97,000 COVID-19 tests were conducted over the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of cases in the country to 301,348.

The total death toll from coronavirus has increased to 7,445 with the 68 new fatalities. Meanwhile, the total number of people who have recovered from COVID-19 increased to 266,117 with 1,312 patients being declared free of the coronavirus in the past day.

Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said on Twitter that the number of patients in critical condition had risen to 1,432, adding that health staff across the country were working hard to treat those who had succumbed to the illness.

Koca urged the nation to remain committed to coronavirus measures and strictly follow all instructions in an effort to reduce the tally of patients in critical condition.

Turkey has been seeing a resurgence in coronavirus infections for the past few weeks, with daily infection rates slowly but steadily climbing.

In an effort to prevent a further increase in infection rates, the Interior Ministry last week declared wearing masks outside mandatory across all provinces.

The order previously applied to only the worst-hit cities, with many provinces only requiring mask use in busy streets.

Across the world, COVID-19 has claimed over 953,000 lives in 188 countries and regions since last December. The U.S., India, Brazil, and Russia are currently the worst-hit countries.

More than 30.56 million cases have been reported worldwide, with recoveries exceeding 20.82 million, according to figures compiled by the U.S.-based Johns Hopkins University.