Coronavirus: UAE daily cases rise above 3,000 as testing is stepped up

A further 3,791 patients recovered from the virus as seven died

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The UAE's daily coronavirus infections rose above 3,000 for the first time in three days on Tuesday.

The Ministry of Health and Prevention confirmed 3,310 cases, taking the country's tally to 309,649.

A further 3,791 patients were given the all-clear as the recovery total moved to 285,201.

Seven patients died, making the death toll 866.

An additional 181,635 tests were conducted during the 24-hour reporting period as authorities continue to step up screening rates.

At least 180,000 tests were carried out in four of the past five days, hitting a peak of 184,260 on Sunday.

More than 26 million tests have been administered since the outbreak began last March.

Case numbers had dropped for the past three days, falling to 2,730 on Monday.

The recent decline followed a sharp rise in infections during the early weeks of 2021.

After case numbers had hovered around the 1,200 to 1,300 range for much of December, infections surged at the start of the year.

A record number of infections was reported for 17 days in a row, from January 12 to January 28, reaching a high of 3,966.

In the month of January, 95,787 positive tests for Covid-19 were recorded, at an average of 3,089 per day.

The number of active cases across the Emirates dropped to 23,582 after recoveries exceeded new cases for the third day running.

A mass testing strategy has been a cornerstone of the national effort to combat the pandemic since the first cases were reported in the Emirates on January 29 of last year.

Now, widespread immunisation of the public is the next step in the fight against the virus.

Authorities on Tuesday said 123,740 doses were administered across the UAE over the past 24 hours. More than 3.5 million vaccine doses have been administered so far, which represents a rate of 36.04 doses per 100 people, placing the UAE below only Israel in a global league table of inoculation rates.

Dubai has also approved the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine for use.

The first shipment arrived from India on Tuesday.

The consignment was ordered from the Serum Institute of India, which makes the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine on licence.

Dubai has also taken steps this week to reduce community transmission of the virus by cutting seating capacity in various venues including cinemas, entertainment and sports complexes to 50 per cent.

Restaurants and cafes will be required to close by 1am. They will also not be allowed to organise any entertainment activities.

Any licensed venue classed as a “pub or bar” but that is not a restaurant will be closed immediately.