UAE reports 85 new coronavirus cases, 7 recoveries, as public sector begins work from home policy

Pink flamingoes feed in the mud flats at the Ras al-Khor Wildlife Sanctuary in Dubai, with the city skyline seen in the background, on March 18, 2020 as the site has been closed to the public amidst the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. (File/AFP)
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Updated 27 March 2020

UAE reports 85 new coronavirus cases, 7 recoveries, as public sector begins work from home policy

  • The Ministry of Health and Prevention said the new cases involved people from a number of countries in Europe, Africa and across the Middle East
  • The increase brings the total number of confirmed cases in the country to 333

DUBAI: The UAE has reported 85 new coronavirus cases and seven recoveries, state news agency WAM reported on Wednesday.

The Ministry of Health and Prevention said the new cases involved people from a number of countries in Europe, Africa and across the Middle East.

The increase brings the total number of confirmed cases in the country to 333.

The recovered cases are five Bangladeshi and two Pakistani nationals. The patients left the hospital after making a full recovery, bringing the total number of recovered cases in the country to 52.

Meanwhile al public sector workers in Dubai have been told to work from home from Sunday, March 29, as part of the ongoing efforts to slow the spread of the coronavirus, state news agency WAM reported.

So far 24 government agencies have achieved 100 percent work from home with only staff remaining in the workplace where their role necessitates it.

Medical professionals and other adults are required by law to notify the authorities of any suspected cases, failure to do so can result in prosecution.

“The detection of one infected case compels the authorities to conduct a necessary investigation among all those in contact with this one case in order to identify the source of the infection and its aftermath,” The official spokesperson of the UAE health sector Dr Farida Al-Hosani said.

“In this we usually detect additional cases. It usually starts with a person coming from abroad who then transmits the virus to others around him or her.”

“The recent precautionary measures announced are aimed at protecting society, with the law to be applied only to violators of the UAE law on communicable diseases, under which violators are subject to jail terms and fines,” she added.

The UAE will impose overnight curfews as a temporary measure this weekend, when it carries out a nationwide disinfection campaign to curb the spread of the new coronavirus.
The regional business hub, which has confirmed 333 cases of the virus and two deaths, has not announced an official curfew or work suspension but has increasingly clamped down on movement.
Authorities announced that the UAE will restrict movement of traffic and people overnight from Thursday until Sunday. The restrictions will last from 8 p.m. (1600 GMT) to 6 a.m.
Only essential service workers would be allowed out and violators will face fines, a security forces spokesman said on Thursday.
Public transport including trams and metro services will be suspended, while private cars, cabs and delivery vehicles can operate outside those hours.

— With input from Reuters


Iran’s new coronavirus death toll passes 4,000

Updated 34 min 56 sec ago

Iran’s new coronavirus death toll passes 4,000

  • Total number of infections in the country has risen to 67,286

DUBAI: Iran’s new coronavirus death toll has climbed to 4,003 with 121 more deaths in the past 24 hours, a Health Ministry spokesman told state TV on Wednesday, adding that the total number of infections in the country has risen to 67,286.
“We had 1,997 new infected cases in the past 24 hours .... there are 3,956 infected people in critical conditions,” spokesman Kianush Jahanpur added.