Coronavirus: UAE records 266 new cases and no deaths

Another 118 people recovered over a 24-hour period

The UAE reported 266 new coronavirus cases and 118 recoveries on Saturday.

Officials said no one died in the past 24 hours from complications.

The country has recorded 743,852 cases, 738,505 recoveries and 2,151 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 had dropped to double digits, after reaching close to 4,000 a day in January, but the emergence of the Omicron variant coinciding with events and holidays is suspected to be the cause of the recent rise.

An additional 235,367 tests were conducted over the 24-hour period, bringing to more than 106 million the total number carried out since the beginning of the outbreak.

The health ministry said 22 million vaccine doses have been given across the country.

Meanwhile, a private drive-through coronavirus testing centre has opened in Sharjah.

The 1,393-square-metre facility can process up to 20,000 tests a day, according to its operator, NMC Health.

The average time from registration to swab collection is less than five minutes.

The UAE was one of the first countries in the world to use mass testing for Covid-19 in March 2020, to restrict the pandemic.

Updated: December 18th 2021, 11:21 AM