Add news
March 2010
April 2010
May 2010June 2010July 2010
August 2010
September 2010October 2010
November 2010
December 2010
January 2011
February 2011March 2011April 2011May 2011June 2011July 2011August 2011September 2011October 2011November 2011December 2011January 2012February 2012March 2012April 2012May 2012June 2012July 2012August 2012September 2012October 2012November 2012December 2012January 2013February 2013March 2013April 2013May 2013June 2013July 2013August 2013September 2013October 2013November 2013December 2013January 2014February 2014March 2014April 2014May 2014June 2014July 2014August 2014September 2014October 2014November 2014December 2014January 2015February 2015March 2015April 2015May 2015June 2015July 2015August 2015September 2015October 2015November 2015December 2015January 2016February 2016March 2016April 2016May 2016June 2016July 2016August 2016September 2016October 2016November 2016December 2016January 2017February 2017March 2017April 2017May 2017June 2017July 2017August 2017September 2017October 2017November 2017December 2017January 2018February 2018March 2018April 2018May 2018June 2018July 2018August 2018September 2018October 2018November 2018December 2018January 2019February 2019March 2019April 2019May 2019June 2019July 2019August 2019September 2019October 2019November 2019December 2019January 2020February 2020March 2020April 2020May 2020June 2020July 2020August 2020September 2020October 2020November 2020December 2020January 2021
News Every Day |

Coronavirus: Face masks are here to stay for up to a year, say UAE doctors

Face masks worn in public will be around for the foreseeable future as a tool to curb the spread of the Coronavirus, say UAE doctors.

Facial coverings have been mandatory in the UAE since the height of the pandemic. A 3,000 Dirham fine remains for anyone not adhering to safety regulations.

For more coronavirus news, visit our dedicated page.

Rules have since been relaxed allowing no facemask requirements whilst a person is exercising. People with certain medical conditions are also exempt.

The new normal

Face masks are the new norm, and medical professionals speaking to Al Arabiya English say the trend is here to stay during 2021.

Dr Ravi Arora, of Abu Dhabi’s NMC Hospital, said wearing face masks for another year is likely, as the authorities track the new strains of virus.

“With new variants keep popping up which could minimize the impact of vaccines – it could be between six months to a year before not wearing masks becomes a possibility.”

Dr Saheer Sainalabdeen, Specialist Respiratory Medicine Medeor Hospital, Abu Dhabi, noted that the majority of available vaccines have an efficacy of around 95 percent, but their “effectiveness to prevent transmission [of Coronavirus] even if it does will be something less than that.”

“So, until we build up the immunity in the public to around 70 percent we have to wear masks and follow other precautions.”

"With new variants popping up which could minimize the impact of vaccines, it could be between six months to a year before not wearing masks becomes a possibility,” Dr Arora said.

A second internal medicine specialist emphasized the importance of following all guidance to prevent viral transmission. Dr Sawsan Humaida, from Abu Dhabi’s Bareen International Hospital, said: ”From a medical standpoint, we encourage the community to remain vigilant and continue to follow the standard precautionary and preventive health measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 virus.”

For all the latest headlines follow our Google News channel online or via the app.

“Amidst the ongoing COVID-19 vaccination campaign in the UAE - where we see a massive turnout from the public to achieve herd immunity - wearing a facemask, continuous hand washing and sanitizing hands, as well as maintaining physical distance of two meters are still effective tools in curbing the spread of the virus,” Dr Humaida added.

'A long way to go'

Dr Abner Rivas Abejo, a specialist in Internal Medicine at Dubai’s Medeor Hospital, said: “Even with the presence of vaccines against COVID-19 which has shown great efficacy and safety profile, we still have a long way to go until we can stop wearing masks.

“Wearing a mask properly has been one of the effective barrier that keeps a person from getting infected not only with the COVID-19 virus but from other respiratory viruses as well. It prevents these microscopic organisms to enter and invade our bodies and cause disease by preventing entry from our airways.

“This is why it is very important to use and wear masks properly.”

Read more:

Coronavirus: Dubai announces face mask exemptions for eligible individuals

Coronavirus: Face masks may reduce COVID-19 severity, create immunity, study shows

Coronavirus: Dubai changes rules on wearing face masks in public

Read also

‘What If You Just Don’t Tell Anyone?’

Dancing On Ice’s Joe Warren Plant crashes to the ground as he slips and falls in show debut

I had 3 years left to live after ovarian cancer diagnosis – but new drug gave me my life back

News, articles, comments, with a minute-by-minute update, now on — latest news 24/7. You can add your news instantly now — here