Coronavirus: UAE records 2,234 new cases

Another day of record testing as infections climb above 2,000 for the first time since June

Live updates: follow the latest news on Covid-19 variant Omicron

The UAE recorded 2,234 new Covid-19 cases on Wednesday.

This brings the total number of infections recorded since the pandemic began to 757,145.

No deaths were recorded, meaning the toll remained at 2,160.

Another 774 people beat the virus, raising the number of recoveries to 743,340.

The latest cases were identified as a result of an additional 448,050 PCR tests. This figure represents a record number conducted over a 24-hour reporting period.

Daily case numbers have risen sharply this month, from less than 50 in early December, but authorities have expanded testing and introduced new rules to protect public health.

It comes as Abu Dhabi's public and private schools will switch to distance learning during the first two weeks of the second term from January 3.

The decision was made as a “precautionary measure to limit the spread of Covid-19 and maintain low infection rates in the emirate", authorities said.

Dubai's private schools, however, are to remain open.

The move was announced at Tuesday's weekly UAE Covid-19 briefing.

Authorities during the briefing cautioned that the world is witnessing a “significant increase” in the number of infections due to the Omicron variant.

The briefing also heard fresh calls for people to take the Covid-19 vaccine and booster, and to continue to follow rules such as social distancing and wearing masks.

Officials outlined more details about the new UAE-approved Sinopharm vaccine and how it works.

The schools decision came on the same day that Abu Dhabi tightened its border controls.

Vaccinated people entering Abu Dhabi from Thursday must show Al Hosn green pass, while those who have not been vaccinated must show a negative PCR test result not older than 96 hours. The new rules apply in conjunction with the use of EDE scanners.

Updated: December 29th 2021, 10:34 AM