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UAE confirms 14 new COVID-19 cases; total now 59

DUBAI: Efforts by the UAE to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus have yielded 14 more new cases, bringing the total to 59 from 45 just two days ago.

This was gathered from the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP) which tweeted today, March 9, that the cases involved four Emiratis, three Italians, two Bangladeshis, two Nepalese, a Russian, an Indian and a Syrian national.

The MoHAP also announced the full recovery of five COVID-19 patients undergoing treatment.   The ministry said in a statement that two Emiratis, two Ethiopians, and a Thai national were the latest to recover from the virus, bringing to 12 the total recovered cases in the country.

The government agency, meantime said the new cases were “discovered following an active and continuing investigation (as well as) testing of those who came in contact with previously confirmed infected individuals who have been quarantined.”

It will be recalled that two Abu Dhabi hotels were put in lockdown late last month after two technical crew of an international cycling event, 2020 UAE Tour, who were from Italy, tested positive for COVID-19.

The lockdown isolated guests and other event participants who might have interacted with the two.

It could not immediately be verified officially whether the lockdown has resulted to the discovery of the 14 new cases or a part of it.

Just two days ago, on March 7, Saturday, government authorities announced 15 new cases, which brought the total to 45. On March 3 the total was 27.

The Emirates News Agency (ENA) citing Dr. Abdul Rahman bin Mohammad bin Nasser Al Owais, MoHAP Minister, has reported that the two technical crew typically do not mix with participants in the event.

The MoHAP minister also said during a joint news conference with Hussain bin Ibrahim Al Hammadi, Minister of Education, at the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NECDMA) in Abu Dhabi on Saturday, Feb. 29, that “a total of 612 people who were in contact with the two Italian patients were examined,” according to ENA.

ENA also quoted Al Owais as saying that “laboratory results for 450 showed they were free of the virus, while results for the remaining 162 people were expected soon.”   

MoHAP meantime said UAE authorities have “spared no effort in monitoring the spread of the virus in the country” adding that “several precautionary measures have been put in place, including the installation of detection thermal imaging systems and health checks at the country’s border entry points, and isolating confirmed and suspected cases.”

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