The last time the country recorded less than 1,000 new coronavirus cases was on October 19, when 915 infections were registered.
Doctors in the UAE are reiterating that taking the Covid-19 jab could be the way forward for communities as the country’s daily virus cases have dipped below the 1,000 mark on Sunday, for the first time in over two months.
Since then, daily cases have hovered between 1,000 and 1,400.
On Wednesday, Dubai announced the free rollout of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine against Covid-19, while China’s Sinopharm vaccine which has been available since the past 15 days now is being offered to masses across many hospitals and medical centres in the country.
Throwing light on the turn out and the positive sentiments that have consequently emerged, doctors feel the vaccines could usher in the much needed respite.
Dr Iajaz Ahmed, medical director, NMC Specialty Hospital, Al Ain, said: “The trend looks promising and shows the trust and confidence the people have shown on vaccines. There have been no major side effects reported till now. And there is no significant spike in resident numbers since the emergence of the new strain.”
Meanwhile, the country’s Covid-19 infection rate is below 1 per cent. Of the 20.33 million Covid-19 tests conducted, 201,836 were positive cases – an infection rate of 0.9 per cent.
Dr Amaka Kate Uzu, consultant, family medicine, Bareen International Hospital, MBZ City, urged community members to take the jab.
“We see more people in large volumes coming for the vaccine. We encourage the community to get the vaccination. So, we can hopefully fight this virus.”
Dr Adnan Alkhalefeh, general practitioner, noted that in the light of the new strain of Covid-19, more residents may seek vaccination in the coming days.
“We expect that the response will increase after the information on the new strain of Covid-19 virus came out. We still do not have sufficient data about the new virus strain in relation to Covid-19 vaccine. So, we encourage the general public to continue following precautionary measures such as washing hands, wearing face masks and maintaining social distance.”
Expressing unanimity, Dr Rehab Ahmed, specialist, internal medicine at Medcare Hospital Sharjah also stated that there is no upper age limit to take these vaccines.
However, she said that the elderly need to check with doctors about their eligibility, before they take the shot.
“It is the doctor who will decide, according to the person’s general condition and after checking the individual’s medical history, whether he or she can take the vaccine,” she said.
As so much hope is pinned on these vaccines, the medical fraternity reassuringly opine that the comforting dip in Covid-19 cases comes as the country continues its free vaccination campaigns across the country.
Michael Brenden Davis, chief executive officer, NMC Healthcare, noted: “It is time for all of us to celebrate how far biology has come, how fruitfully we can manipulate biochemical machinery for the good of humanity, and celebrate the potency of science in its global endeavour.