People happy for being allowed sans face mask at certain places - GulfToday

People happy for being allowed sans face mask at certain places


Hardly anybody is found without a face mask at public places. Kamal Kassim / Gulf Today

Mariecar Jara-Puyod, Senior Reporter

UAE residents have hailed with caution the decision of the Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHaP) and the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management (NECDM) on the non-obligatory use of face masks in certain situations such as among household members as well as for customers at beauty salon for haircut and facial services.

Prime Medical Center (Deira) general practitioner Dr. Daffodils Guevarra: “As long as everyone follows the established social distancing protocols and other proven safety precautions, this is a move which will help us transition with living as near-normal as possible during this pandemic. The UAE Government has done an excellent job in handling the COVID19 situation. The decision just goes to show the confidence of the UAE in making this country one of the safest in the world.”

Student Itmamul Wafa: “The local authorities always take care of us.”

Compliance officer Novaria Barrett: “I agree. But we need to keep the physical distance even if majority have been vaccinated.”

Aster Clinic (Abu Shagara) general practitioner Dr. Peter Anto Edakulathoor: ‘It is a measure to normalise life provided it is strictly implemented with no exceptions. Although facial masks are of utmost importance in the current situation, this step will help alleviate the mental trauma associated with the pandemic. Adhering to ‘when and where the mask is not compulsory will help in slowing down the spread of the virus eventually. Heavy fines are to be imposed on violators. Taking into consideration how well the UAE Government and the health sector was in controlling the pandemic. I have full confidence that the new move will be a success.”

Freelance Eko Prianof: “Thank you MoHaP and NCEMA. Normal life begins.”

Deca Homes-Sales & Operations senior vice president Liza Teves: “Good news for both the residents and tourists. But I still prefer to use face masks. Being vaccinated is still not a guaranteed solution against COVID-19.”

Government employee of Indonesia Nelvy MS: “I prefer to use the mask for my own safety.”

Filipino Social Club president Ericson Reyes: “It is a good move, a positive one. But we still have to be extra-careful because we all know that COVID19 is our invisible enemy very much around.”

Burjeel Hospital (Dubai) chief medical officer Nayzak Raoof: “The announcement has come at the right time, giving a sense of relief to a larger section of people. It has been 18 months. The announcement reflects the confidence of the UAE authorities. We have tackled the pandemic and contained the virus successfully to a great extent. The number of cases has dipped to all-time low levels. High vaccination rate including the administration of booster dose has been the central pillar. Also relentless tracing of contacts, testing, and strict enforcement of precautionary measures have played a crucial role. But we are not letting up our guard against the virus. These are minor relaxations but crucial at this point. People should continue to follow the precautions in public places and while interacting with people outside the family.”

Personal assistant Kashika Saraswati: “This is a development but the virus is still there so all safety measures and protocols must remain.

Separately, the Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP) announced that it conducted 318,605 additional COVID-19 tests over the past 24 hours, using state-of-the-art medical testing equipment.

In a statement on Wednesday, the Ministry stressed its aim to continue expanding the scope of testing nationwide to facilitate the early detection of coronavirus cases and carry out the necessary treatment. As part of its intensified testing campaign, MoHAP announced 318 new coronavirus cases, bringing the total number of recorded cases in the UAE to 733,643.

According to the Ministry, the infected individuals are from various nationalities, are in a stable condition, and receiving the necessary care.

MoHAP also announced two deaths due to COVID-19 complications, bringing the total number of deaths in the country to 2,080.

The Ministry expressed its sincere condolences to the families of the deceased and wished COVID-19 patients a speedy and full recovery. It called on all members of the society to cooperate with health authorities, adhere to the instructions and physical distance to ensure the health and safety of all.

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