Coronavirus: UAE daily case numbers rise again as officials urge safety

Nine days ago, on August 10, the UAE recorded fewer than 200 cases

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The number of daily Covid-19 cases in the UAE continued to rise on Wednesday as health officials urged the public to adhere to safety measures and prevent further infections.

Another 435 new cases were recorded across the country, raising the number to 65,341.

It was the third consecutive day of increases in cases, with almost 100 more infections than the day before.

The cases were detected after a further 72,026 tests were conducted. The UAE has conducted almost 6.2 million Covid-19 tests since the outbreak began in January.

Officials said 113 people recovered from the virus on Wednesday while one patient died. This brought the recoveries tally to 58,022 while death toll reached 367.

The number of active Covid-19 cases in the UAE currently stands at 6,952. The last time the UAE had that many active cases was a month ago, on July 22.

Dr Adil Sajwani, a family medicine specialist at the Ministry of Health and Prevention, said the recent increase in cases was a setback for the UAE, after daily figures had gone down to 160 per day.

“People are taking things very carelessly,” he said.

“Just yesterday we saw the number of cases increase to something like 200 or 300, which means cases are doubling in two or three days."

He said safety measures were being upheld in public places but more commitment was needed from people at home.

“There are families holding weddings at homes and gathering [for funerals], which contributed to increase in cases in the UAE.

“We don’t want to go back to the national sterilisation programme when people were kept at homes," he said, referring to a nightly sanitisation drive that involved a stay-home order from 8pm to 6am.

He called on people to adhere to precautionary measures until a vaccine is developed.

“Until that happens, people need to know that three things will make our life better which are cleaning and sanitisation, physical distancing and wearing masks”

"In this second wave if we don't adhere to measures, people only have themselves to blame because the government has been and is still doing everything it can to maintain the safety of everyone."

On Tuesday, health authorities described the increases in cases over the past two weeks as "alarming".

Minister of Health and Prevention, Abdulrahman Al Owais, called on residents and Emiratis to avoid gatherings and wear face masks to prevent further infections.

"This rate of increase may be worrying and indicates an increase in the rate of infection in the coming period," he said.

"The UAE's strategy against Covid-19 will not be complete unless we all comply to precautionary measures."

The fine for not wearing a face mask in public or not adhering to physical distancing is Dh3,000.