Five-minute nasal swab tests will be conducted at the new centres. Photo for illustrative purpose only. Image Credit: Agency

Dubai: Dubai Health Authority (DHA) will be opening three new drive-through centres for COVID-19 testing for the benefit of Dubai residents shortly.

Humaid Al Quatami, Director General of DHA, has confirmed to an Arabic daily that the centres will conduct the five-minute nasal swab test, the the kiosks are slated to open "soon".

These centres are in addition to the six drive-through testing centres opened by Al Futtaim Health. The Al Futtaim centres will conduct free-of-cost screening for 20,000 Al Futtaim employees and their families, besides other eligible candidates from the general public for Dh370, which is the cost price of the test.

Giving an update on the Al Futtaim Health Centres, Dr Haidhar Al Yousuf, Managing Director of Al Futtaim Health, told Gulf News on Friday: “The first centre which opened at the Dubai Festival City on March 29, has already condcuted 400 tests. Beginning Tuesday, April 6, all six centres will go live for testing for general public. The other five centres will be situated at the Al Futtaim Health Hub clinics in Al Ghusais, Al Warqa, International City, Discovery Gardens and Silicon Oasis.”

Dr Yousuf addded that in order to qualify for screening, people have to fill an online self-assessment tool on the health hub website and only if they are found to be eligible as per the criteria will they be allowed to take the test. The idea is to prioritise the critical health service for those who need it the most.

Eligibility criteria

The elibility criteria for candidates is as per the Centre of Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organisation (WHO) guidelines.

It includes anyone who is symptomatic (cough or fever or shortness of breath) and has had close contact with a confirmed or suspected COVID-19 case, or a travel history within the last 14 days.