SEHA drive through National Screening Center; covid-19 in UAE
Vehicles lined up at the SEHA COVID-19 drive through National Screening Center at Golf and Shooting club in Sharjah. Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

Dubai: More than 2 million COVID-19 tests are to be conducted in the coming two months, the Ministry of Health and Prevention announced on Monday during a press briefing.

At the press briefing, Dr Amna Al Dahak Al Shamsi, official spokesperson of the UAE Government, provided an update on COVID-19 and all developments taken to reduce its impact.

Al Dahhak announced the intention of the Ministry of Health and Prevention, working in partnership with all health institutions in the country, will conduct the tests.

The new phase in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, which has infected 11 million people globally and 52,068 in the UAE, will screen workers in the service industry and government sectors. This includes public transport drivers and taxis, workers in hotels and malls, as well as employees of government agencies.

The aim of intensifying medical surveys is to ensure the health and safety of all members of society, and to ensure that individuals are free from COVID-19. Those who test positive will be isolated and provided medical treatment.

At the press briefing, Dr Amna Al Dahak Al Shamsi added that the number of cases had slightly increased during the last weekend, unlike the previous two weeks.

She stressed that this increase is a cause for concern and is due to the negligence of some individuals who refuse to adhere to the preventive measures and guidelines. Any increase is dangerous as it could undo the collective efforts and successes which have been achieved so far.

Al-Dahhak asserted that all those who violate guidelines risk not only their own health, but the health of those around them and the wider community. Those who violate continually risk legal action and fines from the state.

She stressed the need to gain news and information from official sources and other verified sources before sharing, as penalties will be applied to anyone who spreads incorrect information.

She appealed to all members of society to fully comply with the instructions issued by the authorities, stressing that commitment is necessary and indispensable in the current period, especially with the reopening of various economic and business activities.

Al-Dahhak said that the current stage in the fight against the pandemic has only been reached due to the huge, unwavering efforts made by government institutions and the efforts heroes from the first line of defence; together they have shielded the wider UAE nation.

Al-Dahhak stressed the need to show individual accountability, particularly when away from the home and in public places to ensure that we do not expose ourselves, or others, to unnecessary risks.

At the end of the briefing,  Al-Dahhak said the UAE Government is constantly evaluating health conditions locally and globally to determine the procedures that need to be followed. And again stressed to all members of society of the importance of following the procedures and instructions as progress will only happen with collective cooperation, commitment and patience.