UAE assures residents + student gets infected

ABU DHABI 6 March 2020: The Ministry of Health and Prevention(MoHAP), announced a new Coronavirus, Covid-19, case on Thursday.

The latest case, a 17-year old male Emirati student, who had no symptoms. The ministry confirmed that he is currently receiving medical care and his condition is stable.

The ministry said that in coordination with health and other concerned authorities in the country, precautionary measures have been taken, including the immediate isolation of the patient and suspending classes at the school whilst teams of specialists started the necessary sterilisation in and around the school facilities, said Wam.

The ministry is also conducting tests for all contacts to ensure their safety and the safety of the community.

It urged the public to get all information about coronavirus from the credible sources and to avoid rumours and false information.

Dubai reassures travellers on medical screening

Commander-in-Chief of Dubai Police and Head of Dubai’s Crisis and Disaster Management Team Major General Abdullah Khalifa Al Marri said all concerned authorities are working round the clock in coordination with the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention and Dubai Health Authority’s medical team to implement precautionary measures against Covid-19 and ensure the highest levels of safety and protection for the public.

Substantial preventive measures have been put in place in various airports and seaports in the emirate.

Al Marri said measures have been taken to screen passengers effectively in a hassle-free manner in order to avoid any delay or inconvenience at the ports of entry. He further said equipment to screen passengers for coronavirus symptoms have been installed at all travel points. All passengers including transit passengers are being screened.

He further said enhanced screening measures have been put in place for travellers entering the UAE from high-risk countries. These measures do not apply to transit passengers. Enhanced screening procedures include a swab test and health questionnaire.

Add 2-3 hours to journey time

Travellers should be aware that this may add 2-3 hours to their journey time, he pointed out. After the test, travellers are free to continue their journey. They will be contacted only if any further intervention is needed, such as reporting to a medical facility or self-quarantine.

He also said the team is working closely with all concerned authorities including Dubai Airports, Dubai Customs, DP World, Dubai Ambulance, Government of Dubai Media Office, Dubai Municipality, RTA, Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, as well as with federal authorities to ensure the highest level of precautions.

The team is also working with the aviation and transport community to monitor the changing global situation, and ensure international best practices and standards are being followed to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

UAE equipped to handle Covid-19: NCEMA

In a special presentation at the International Government Communication Forum (IGCF 2020) in Sharjah on Thursday morning, Saif Mohammed Arhama Al Shamsi, Deputy Director-General of the National Emergency and Crisis and Disasters Management Authority (NCEMA), said that during a crisis or critical event, such as the Coronavirus outbreak, it was important to communicate clearly and calmly while countering false information and panic.

Al Shamsi said that if it was deemed necessary, new laws could come in to place to protect the UAE’s citizens and residents from coronavirus (Covid-19), which has affected over 90,000 people worldwide.

“It may be necessary, for example, for people to work from home for a time and we may need to bring this in to law. It wouldn’t necessarily effect all companies,” he said, “but it would effect some.”

He added, “We don’t want to think about Coronavirus but this is a good example to demonstrate how we communicate in a crisis. Firstly, we monitor and assess the situation. Within days, we were monitoring the situation minute by minute. This is clearly not just a problem for us but for every country.

Each country is working on how to communicate critical information at this time regarding citizens’ safety. This is an international matter and every country is dealing with it, responding appropriately and working on keeping their societies secure.”

Al Shamsi added: “We also ensure that our message is cohesive, so each ministry and agency are not giving differing information. The Minister of Health has declared we must have transparency in our communication about this crisis and to that I would add credibility too. We must avoid rumour and scaremongering. We will work with facts, and take it step by step, working with other agencies.”