Dubai: The Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP) on Saturday confirmed that two more people have been diagnosed with coronavirus in the UAE, taking the total number of cases in the country to 13.
Saturday's confirmed cases include a 70-year old Iranian visitor and his 64-year-old wife. The husband’s condition is said to be "unstable" and he is being closely monitored at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of a hospital.
A Filipino patient, who was diagnosed withthe novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the UAE on February 8, is also still in the ICU, a top official in the health ministry told Gulf News on Saturday morning.
“The Filipino patient is still in ICU,” Dr Hussain Al Rand, Assistant Undersecretary for Health Centres and Clinics at the Ministry of Health and Prevention, said.
On Thursday, Marford Angeles, Consul-General and Deputy Head of Mission at the Philippine Embassy, had told Gulf News that they had been informed by UAE health officials of the condition of the 43-year old Filipino patient.
“The condition of our kababayan (compatriot) is getting worse. We can assure, however, the patient is being given maximum health care and support,” he had said, calling for prayers for the immediate recovery of the patient.
Two cases on Friday
Just yesterday (Friday), another patient from the Philippines, aged 34, along with a 39 year old from Bangladesh, tested positive for COVID-19 in the UAE.
Asked about the condition of these two cases, Dr Al Rand said, “They are stable.”
The two patients were said to be in direct contact with a Chinese patient recently diagnosed with coronavirus.
So far, the total number of patients who have tested positive for COVID19 in the UAE is 13, three of whom have fully recovered.
Ministry urges caution
The ministry affirmed that all people in direct contact with the coronavirus patients are being checked to ensure the safety of the community and that the disease will not break out in the country.
According to available studies by the World Health Organisation (WHO), more than 80 per cent of coronavirus patients develop mild symptoms such as fever and coughing, following which they recover. The mortality rate of the new coronavirus does not exceed 0.2 per cent, but increases when the patient already suffers from chronic diseases or is aged.
The ministry on Friday said it was coordinating with health and other concerned authorities in the country, and had been following a very effective epidemiological monitoring mechanism. All necessary precautions were being taken, including check-ups and observation of people in contact with patients as per the guidelines and standards of the World Health Organisation, the ministry added.
It urged the public to follow preventive procedures and read awareness instructions available on its website and the official websites of health authorities in the UAE.
Advising caution, the MOHAP said, “The public are advised to adopt protective health behaviours to avoid infectious diseases, including washing hands with soap and clean water, and covering the mouth when coughing or sneezing to stop the spread of germs and viruses.”