Gulf Today

Dubai eases vaccine criteria for lactating mothers, virus patients


DUBAI: The Dubai Health Authority ( DHA) announced that as part of the expansion of the eligibilit­y criteria for COVID-19 vaccinatio­n, women who are breasfeedi­ng as well as those who are planning to conceive can take the MRNA vaccine (Pfizer-biontech).

Furthermor­e, patients who had COVID-19 no longer need to wait for three months to get the vaccine.

They can take it on completion of their isolation, provided the infection was mild or non-symptomati­c.

Dr Muna Tahlak, CEO of Latifa Hospital for Women and Children, said: “Clinical studies show that the MRNA vaccine is safe for women who are breasfeedi­ng or planning to conceive unless the patient has certain medical contraindi­cations to vaccines or any vaccine component. Mothers who are breasfeedi­ng can now take an MRNA vaccine as per the latest DHA vaccine guidelines. There is no need to stop breasfeedi­ng before or ater vaccinatio­n.”

UAE cases: The UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP) announced that it conducted 214,765 additional COVID-19 tests and detected 1,958 new coronaviru­s cases

MOHAP also announced 3 deaths due to COVID-19 complicati­ons.

The Ministry also noted that an additional 1,545 individual­s had fully recovered from COVID-19.

The Ministry also announced that 111,779 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine were given in the past 24 hours.

The total number of doses provided up to Saturday stands at 9,601,463 with a rate of vaccine distributi­on of 97.08 doses per 100 people.

Global virus toll: The global COVID-19 death toll passed three million on Saturday as the pandemic continues to speed up despite vaccinatio­n campaigns, leading countries like India to impose new lockdowns to fight spiralling infection numbers.

The pandemic is showing no sign of slowing down: the 829,596 new infections reported worldwide on Friday is the highest number yet, according to AFP’S tally.

The daily average of 731,000 cases registered over the last week is also close to being a record.

India’s capital New Delhi went into a weekend lockdown on Saturday as the world’s second-most populous nation recorded 234,000 new cases and 1,341 deaths.

India now has three times the daily cases of the United States, the world’s worst-hit nation, and families are clamouring for drugs and hospital beds.

KUMBH MELA: The Niranjan Akhada has announced curtailing the ongoing Kumbh Mela on April 17, almost two weeks ahead of schedule, ater several senior BJP leaders in Utarakhand held discussion with the Akhadas to convince them to end it amid surge in COVID-19 cases and concerns of violation of Covid protocols, a senior party leader said.

However, the Bjp-ruled state government has already announced that Kumbh Mela will go on as per schedule. The Kumbh Mela started on April 1 and was scheduled to end on April 30.

With reports of huge number of Covid positive cases from ‘Kumbh Mela’ area in Haridwar, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday appealed to observe the event “symbolic” to strengthen fight against the deadly virus.

The Prime Minister’s appeal comes as the annual event has sparked nationwide concern amid alarming second wave of COVID-19 pandemic as tens of thousands of devotees have gathered along the banks of the Ganga in Uttarakhan­d’s Haridwar.

Olympic fears: Thailand recorded its fourth consecutiv­e day of more than 1,000 new cases on Saturday, with spiralling infections linked to a nightlife district of the capital Bangkok earlier this month.

Alcohol sales will be banned in Bangkok restaurant­s from Sunday, while entertainm­ent venues will be shutered across the country for two weeks. In Japan, rising virus cases have stoked speculatio­n that the Olympic Games -- postponed last year due to the pandemic -- could be cancelled.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, in his first meeting with US President Joe Biden, said his government was listening to experts and doing its “utmost” to prepare for the Tokyo games in July.

Night shits at cemetery: In Brazil, the country with the third-highest death toll in the world, night shits have been added to several cemeteries as diggers work around the clock to bury the dead.

One of these is Vila Formosa, the largest cemetery in Latin America and a showcase for the lethal cost of the pandemic in Brazil, where more than 365,000 people have died from COVID-19.

Europe optimistic: But there was beter news in Europe, where some countries are easing their lockdowns in response to not only fatigue, but falling infection numbers and progress with vaccinatio­ns.

Italy announced on Friday it will ease coronaviru­s restrictio­ns for schools and restaurant­s from April 26.

Expressing “cautious optimism”, Prime Minister Mario Draghi said his government was taking a “calculated risk.”

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