UAE records a spike in Covid-19 cases, residents urged to follow all protocols

UAE records a spike in Covid-19 cases, residents urged to follow all protocols

 Medical professionals are urging UAE residents to continue following the protocols of physical distancing and to avoid gatherings in the wake of spike of Covid-19 cases. 

Doctors said various irresponsibly held private parties during the holiday season could have led to recent case spike. On January 1, UAE registered 1,856 cases and by January 7, it increased to 2,988. During the last week’s virtual briefing, authorities said the rise in Covid-19 cases could be due to the recent increased movement between emirates, as well as people coming from overseas into the UAE.  

Dr Salvin George, internal Medicine specialist at Medcare Hospital, Al Safa, said that few residents could have neglected following precautionary measures during holiday season from Christmas to New Year. “The majority of cases we have seen in the past two weeks could have happened because of private parties where people celebrated without precautions,” he said.

Dr George also noted that a quick decline in number of cases is possible if all people remain vigilant and continue following all set protocols.

When asked if the case spike is related to new Coronavirus strain, expert said it’s hard to be tell as differentiating mutation from original virus is “clinically impossible at this stage”. If someone contracts the new strain, he/she will test positive through PCR tests, but labs can’t tell type of Covid virus that has caused the infection.

In late December, authorities had confirmed that there were limited cases of the new Covid-19 strain and that affected people had come from abroad.  

Studies indicate new strain to be more infectious with potential to increase the number of infections. Dr Vishnu Chaitanya Swaroopa Sura, internal medicine specialist of Medeor Hospital, Dubai explains, “According to data from foreign countries, the new strain has caused a ‘relative increase’ in infections. At the same time, there is no data to suggest it is likely to lead to serious illness.”

Dr Vishnu has urged all residents to take the Covid-19 vaccination to help achieve herd immunity. “We have seen in the past how effectively vaccination led to achieving herd immunity and stopped the spread of deadly diseases. The UAE leaders have ensured adequate steps in this direction through initiating mass vaccination programmes. It will help to increase immunity, which will eventually lead to reduce the number of infections. So, it is the responsibility of everyone to get vaccinated. So that we can protect ourselves and break the chain of infection,” Dr Vishnu added.

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