Coronavirus: UAE records lowest number of cases in 18 months

Another 216 people recovered over a 24-hour period

The UAE reported 156 new coronavirus cases and 216 recoveries on Wednesday, its lowest daily tally since April 1 last year.

Officials said three people died in the past 24 hours from complications.

The country has recorded 737,229 cases, 730,309 recoveries and 2,107 deaths since the first Covid-19 case was detected in the Emirates on January 29 last year.

Widespread testing and tracing, stringent safety measures and a high vaccination rate have been credited for bringing down daily infections.

Cases have dropped since reaching close to 4,000 a day in January.

An additional 298,908 tests were conducted over the 24-hour period, bringing to 85,810,321 the total number carried out since the beginning of the outbreak.

Meanwhile, the UAE has authorised emergency use of booster shots of Pfizer-BioNTech and Sputnik vaccines for some groups.

Booster shots are to be given six months after the second dose.

The announcement came during the weekly Covid-19 briefing on Tuesday.

The groups that should take a booster shot are senior citizens and residents aged over 60; people with chronic diseases, or at risk of complications (aged 50-59); and people receiving long-term health care (aged 18 years and over).

The announcement does not apply to those who have received Pfizer-BioNTech or Sputnik booster doses after being fully vaccinated with Sinopharm.

The briefing heard that the decision came after studies showed the benefits of a booster six months after the second dose.

Updated: October 6th 2021, 11:07 AM