The UAE government, on Monday, eased a number of restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic at the state level in various sectors. The new updates will take effect as of Wednesday (28/09/2022), according to the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NCEMA).
NCEMA explained that the vaccinated people would have to conduct PCR test every thirty days to ensure continuity of green pass activation on Al Hosn application, while the non-vaccinated will have to do that every seven days.
It also said that wearing a mask has become optional for all open and closed facilities and places, except in mosques, worshipping places, medical facilities and public transport.
It continued, “All food service providers, the infected and contacts must wear a mask, in order to preserve the safety of society,”
It also advised the elders and people with chronic diseases to continue wearing a mask when going out in order to preserve their safety and health.
Meanwhile, the physical distancing in mosques has been waived with the need to use a private praying mat.
It also said the isolation period for individuals infected with COVID-19 has been decreased to five days, whether in home or in an institution, as employer bears expenses of institutional isolation, for example labor cities
As for the contacts, they will have to give PCR test when symptoms appear, NCEMA added.
The travel requirements for the vaccinated and non-vaccinated people subject to the request of the destination, it added.
Moreover, NCEMA said that the daily announcement of COVID-19 cases on media would stop from Wednesday, to be announced on the official website of the Ministry of Health and Prevention, the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Authority and the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NCEMA).
Dr. Saif Al Dhaheri, the official spokesperson for the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority, said that the green pass system is still a mandatory requirement for employees and visitors to enter the workplaces of the federal authorities, noting that the workers in the tourism and economic sector are linked to the green pass system.
Al Dhaheri also reiterated that the tourism sector, which features hotels and their facilities, parks and entertainment venues, and the economic sector such as centers and shops, in addition to various events, are vital and active sectors. Therefore, the green pass would remain a mandatory requirement to enter those places with the new updates, he added.
“Organizers of the various events will have the option to tighten actions based on the latest developments, the importance of the event, and the intensity of attendance,’ he added.
Al Dhaheri continued, “As for the aviation sector, it will operate under the precautionary and preventive measures in line with the national aviation protocol. Airlines will have the option whether or not to oblige passengers to wear a mask on board aircraft, while the requirements regarding the COVID-19 PCR test for departures from vaccinated and non-vaccinated people rely on the request of the destination to travel to.”
“With regard to those coming to the country, the current protocol is still in force for the vaccinated and the non-vaccinated,” Al Dhaheri said.
As for the education sector, Al Dhaheri explained that it operates under the precautionary and preventive measures enforced by the national protocol for education.
“The procedures regarding wearing masks in closed and open places in the educational facilities have been updated as well. It has become optional. Moreover, the green pass system has been also updated, as was previously announced for educational facilities,” he added.
He further noted that the attention to precautionary measures and the interest in groups most vulnerable to infection has become more important than ever.
“We are fully confident that the conscious and responsible society of the UAE is worthy of this confidence, and will continue the commitment that was a major reason for us to reach this stability,” Al Dhaheri added.
Dr. Saif Al Dhaheri concluded by saying, “What the UAE has reached today is thanks to your commitment. We thank you for your awareness and solidarity in the past period. All of us should thank the frontline heroes, whose mission has not ended, as COVID-19 is still present and the commitment is still in force to safeguard the significant achievements of the country and to preserve health of its society.”