Health minister says UAE stockpiled medical supplies for coronavirus

World Faizah Kamal 12-Feb-2020
Medical Mask Coronavirus
ID 170880106 © Vyychan |

The United Arab Emirates has stockpiled enough emergency medical supplies in preparation for the coronavirus, according to a statement by the Health Minister Abdul Rahman bin Mohammad bin Nasser Al-Owais.

“We are among the first countries to have received appropriate quantities of [coronavirus] test kits, which unfortunately, many countries didn’t have until recently,” he said. “The UAE was leading in making orders, following up and in research.”

Al-Owais gave a statement while briefing the UAE’s Federal National Council on the virus. He mentioned that more than 500 staff members are working on communication, medical investigations, and logistical support to help combat the spread of the virus.

“As soon as the spread of the virus was reported from China, we made available enough quantities of thermometers at the border crossings and airports,” Al-Owais said. “We also took all necessary precautions in line with World Health Organisation (WHO) protocols.”

The UAE has “adequate reserves” of medical supplies including anti-viral medications, surgical masks and medical gloves, Al-Owais added. He also confirmed that several factories in the UAE are manufacturing more supplies “to the best international standards.”

He said that a total of eight coronavirus cases have been detected in the UAE since the spread of the virus, but all of them are in a stable condition.

“All those who had contact with the affected and the places they have frequented have been contacted,” Al-Owais said. “All the necessary steps to preempt the spread of the infection have been taken.”

The UAE announced on February 9 that one of the people to be infected – an 83-year-old Chinese woman – had been cured, making her the first person in the country to beat the virus.