The number of new coronavirus infections in Romania -- the EU member state with the second-lowest vaccination rate -- rose by a record 15,037 in the past 24 hours, authorities announced on October 5.
The previous record -- 12,590 infections -- had been registered on October 2. A total of 1,289,156 cases have been registered in Romania since the start of the pandemic.
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There were 252 fatalities over the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of deaths caused by COVID-19 to 37,929.
Health officials said no intensive-care beds were available as of October 5 in Romania, a country of some 19.5 million.
Only a little more than one-third of Romania's adult population has been vaccinated amid distrust in state institutions and misinformation campaigns. Only its neighbor and fellow EU member Bulgaria has vaccinated fewer people.
About 40 percent of medical staff in Romania are not vaccinated. The government is considering making digital EU COVID-19 passports mandatory for them.
On October 2, 12,000 people demonstrated in Bucharest against vaccines, mask wearing, and new measures by the authorities to curb the alarming surge in infections. Similar protests were held in other cities across the country.
The Bucharest rally was organized by the far-right nationalist Alliance for the Union of Romanians (AUR), a party that entered parliament following general elections in December.
Complicating the situation, Romania's center-right government is expected to fall following a no-confidence vote on October 5.