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UAE reports 376 new Covid-19 cases and 4 deaths; confirms use of hydroxychloroquine

UAE reports 376 new Covid-19 cases and 4 deaths; confirms use of hydroxychloroquine

The total number of cases in the country now stands at 3,736

On Saturday, April 11, the UAE’s Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP) announced that there were 376 new Covid-19 cases detected in the country.

The total number of cases in the country now stands at 3,736.

Officials also confirmed four additional deaths, taking the total number of deaths recorded as a result of the virus in the UAE to 20.

The government said on Saturday that there were 170 more patients who had recovered, and therefore 588 patients overall had recovered from the coronavirus.

Dr. Farida Al Hosani, official spokesperson of the UAE health sector, confirmed that the new cases were in a stable condition and receiving the necessary healthcare, reported official news agency WAM.

Al Hosani added that the new cases were detected following another 20,000 Covid-19 tests conducted over the past few days in line with the country’s announcement to intensify testing among UAE citizens and residents in order to contain the spread of the virus.

The four deaths confirmed on Saturday were of individuals belonging to different nationalities and who were reported to have preexisting chronic diseases.

When speaking about the rise in the accelerated number of recoveries, Al Hosani confirmed that chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine are being used to treat Covid-19 patients. “Some preliminary studies have shown the effectiveness of drugs such as chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine in Covid-19 treatment. These are drugs used in the country, and their effectiveness, as well as that of other antiviral drugs, is being continuously monitored.

“In the past few days, we have noticed a remarkable rise in the number of people who have fully recovered. Many of these were mild cases, which usually recover naturally. In some cases, symptoms lasted for two or three weeks. We have observed that a majority of cases registered in the country do not show major complications and severe symptoms,” she added.

She said that the UAE had started clinical trials of plasma therapy as a Covid-19 treatment too. “Their effectiveness is being researched, and the UAE is keen to further look into studies and treatments around the world and will not delay in providing any available treatment to UAE citizens and residents.”

Read: Watch: How Abu Dhabi built a high-volume Covid-19 testing lab in 14 days

On Thursday, Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (SEHA) opened 13 additional drive-through Covid-19 testing facilities in the emirate.

Read: Pics: UAE opens 13 additional drive-through Covid-19 testing facilities

Meanwhile two testing centres have been opened in Dubai – in Port Rashid and Al Khawaneej, while one centre has been opened in each of Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain, Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah.

“An increase in testing in recent weeks has enabled us to detect more cases, limit the spread of the virus, and isolate those who came in contact with patients. We call upon individuals suffering from a high temperature or with respiratory symptoms, such as cold and cough, to approach the nearest medical centre for examination and follow preventative measures, such as wearing face masks and social distancing with others in medical centres,” said Al Hosani.

There is a national disinfection programme underway across the UAE, wherein movement of residents in Dubai is restricted 24 hours a day and limited to essential purposes, while in Abu Dhabi the sterilisation programme is undertaken in residential areas between 8pm-6am during which movement of the capital emirate’s residents is restricted.

Read: Abu Dhabi residents do not require movement permits during sterilisation programme

The spokesperson said that it wasn’t possible to predict a specific date when normal movements may resume and added that the situation was being evaluated regularly.

As for those who had succumbed to the illness in the UAE, Al Hosani said that their bodies were being handled in a respectful way, including through ritual bathing prior to burial in accordance with the Islamic Shariah and advised families of the deceased that burial and prayer events should be attended by a limited number of family members, while accepting condolences should be avoided and instead be performed by phone.

Globally, over 1.77 million people have been infected by Covid-19 with the death toll at more than 108,000, according to estimates from the Johns Hopkins University.

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