UAE's first drive-through Covid testing centre at Zayed Sports City closes as cases fall

Facility at Zayed Sports City was the first of its kind as the pandemic spread in March 2020

Health chiefs have closed the first mobile Covid-19 testing centre to be established in the UAE, when the pandemic was sweeping through the world in 2020.

The Zayed Sports City drive-through facility in Abu Dhabi was the first of its kind and started operations in March that year.

Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, opened the centre on March 28, 2020.

Sheikh Mohamed thanked the medical teams out in the field as part of the visit.

“[They] are the first line of protection of the UAE [and] their sacrifices safeguard our health,” he said.

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates - Reporter: Shireena Al Nowais: The new screening drive through for COVID-19. Sunday, March 29th, 2020. Zayed Sports City, Abu Dhabi. Chris Whiteoak / The National

Abu Dhabi Health Services Company on Wednesday said the drive-through facility had been permanently closed.

When it opened, the centre transformed testing with results swiftly that were delivered through text messages and the Seha smartphone app.

Similar centres across the UAE soon opened as part of the battle against pandemic. People could later also access vaccines there.

Testing and one of the world's fastest vaccination campaigns have been central to the UAE curbing the pandemic.

Cases have dropped sharply in recent months. The UAE reported 75 coronavirus cases on Wednesday, after an additional 278,127 tests were carried out.

Authorities, meanwhile, advised the public to visit the Seha website or download its smartphone app to book appointments at other sites across the emirate.

Updated: November 11th 2021, 6:39 AM