Ministry announces 238 new cases of coronavirus in Qatar
March 11 2020 06:44 PM
The officials at the press conference
The officials at the press conference yesterday. PICTURE: Jayaram

*MoPH able to contain spread of Covid-19 through early detection, quarantine
*Over 6,000 people tested 
*All under treatment in good health, no critical cases


The Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) announced Wednesday 238 new cases of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) from those in quarantine.

The total number of cases in the country stood at 262 as of Wednesday. The ministry officials clarified at a press conference that all the new cases were detected from people in quarantine as they had contact with the first three cases, detected from expatriates on Sunday.
Over 300 people, who were in contact with the first three expatriate Covid-19 cases, had been in quarantine since then. The Ministry said that the number of cases is likely to increase among those who had contact with the previously announced expatriate patients.
“In a record time, we were able to track and quarantine all the contacts. From Sunday to Wednesday, we were able to track the contacts, quarantine them and conduct hundreds of tests. The active involvement and efforts of the healthcare system in the country, has helped in detecting 238 cases and they have been isolated and admitted in hospital,” stated, Dr Abdullatif al-Khal, co-chair of the National Pandemic Committee and the head of Infectious Diseases Division, Hamad Medical Corporation.

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Quarantined Iran returnees to be 'released' Thursday

Citizens and residents who were quarantined after their return from Iran will be released from isolation today, a top Ministry of Public Health official has announced. “If the final tests conducted on them proved that they are not infected with the coronavirus, they will be released. It is good news as it confirms that isolation and control procedures put in place in Qatar are working perfectly,” Sheikh Dr Mohammed bin Hamad al-Thani, Director of Public Health Department, said Wednesday.

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According to Sheikh Dr Mohammed bin Hamad al-Thani, director of Public Health Department, MoPH, about 6,000 people have been tested for the disease so far in Qatar. “We have conducted about 6,000 tests so far and this is one of the highest number of tests globally and second only to South Korea. Moreover, we have quarantined 800 people. This is an example of how our healthcare system has responded to the emergency situation,” explained Sheikh Mohamed.
Dr Hamad Eid al-Rumaihi, director, Department of Health Protection and Prevention of Transitional Diseases, MoPH said that all the new cases were asymptomatic.
“They were detected by active and heightened surveillance by our teams as they started tracing the contacts with the three early positive cases. Most of the new cases are in very good health and there are no critical cases. It was good on our teams to detect the cases very early and we took them to hospital and isolated them to prevent further spread of the disease,” he noted.
He said that the whole idea is to break the chain of transmission of the disease and more investigations will be continued.
“We haven’t stopped here. The ministry is continuing its efforts through active surveillance. All the previous cases detected for COVID -19 are in good and stable condition. We have been able to identify all these cases due to our vigilance and it is good that we were able to identify these cases very early. We have conducted hundreds of and hundreds of tests,” maintained Dr al-Khal.
The official also said that all the new cases are in very good health and they are all in isolation undergoing necessary treatment. “Admitting them to the hospital is an extra precaution. We should see it as a positive thing as we are able to detect the cases and could prevent the spread of the disease in the community to a great extent. This is the result of the continued efforts of the ministry leading to early detection and isolation,” he described.
Sheikh Mohamed urged the community members to follow all the tips given by the ministry and practise very high levels of hygiene to stop the spread of the disease. “We have launched a big campaign to make the people understand about hygiene as well as the steps to be followed to prevent the spread of the disease.We appeal to everyone to report immediately if they are facing any symptoms. This can reduce the cases in the community. We assure you that we are capable of providing the best care in preventing the spread of the disease,” highlighted, Sheikh Mohamed.
Dr al-Khal also urged the public to avoid social gatherings, major events, avoid physical contacts and follow all the hygiene practices strictly.
“People with chronic diseases as well as people in the vulnerable categories should avoid any physical contacts with others. It is all the more important to avoid unnecessary travel and socialisation. People who have recently come from countries where there is a high spread of the disease, should visit the hospital immediately if they develop any symptoms,” he added.

Last updated: March 11 2020 11:36 PM


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