Nationwide Covid-19 vaccine campaign leading to drop in new cases.
The number of new Covid-19 cases are dropping in hospitals and recoveries are on the rise, but people must follow safety measures during Ramadan to avert a new wave, medical experts warned.
On Friday, there were 2,180 new cases and 2,321 recoveries, with 100,080 vaccine doses administered as the overall vaccination drive hit 8.49 million doses at a distribution rate of 85.85 doses per 100 people.
Dr Rohit Kumar, Medical Director, Medeor Hospital Dubai, noted the nationwide number of new cases dropping from 3,000 in February to 2,000 range since March indicates the effectiveness of the nationwide vaccination campaign, which is also visible at medical facilities.
“Vaccines are helping contain the number of new cases and enhance recoveries. Hospitals are not full of coronavirus patients. In the hospitals and emergencies, we are seeing a downfall in the number of Covid-19 patients. Also, all the hospitals have started elective surgeries that shows the severity of the virus has gone down.”
Dr Sunil Vyas, specialist, pulmonology, Aster Hospital, Al Qusais, underlined that vaccination drive will drastically reduce caseloads and severity of the disease in the “next two to three months”.
“Cases have dropped, and they will further drop faster as the vaccination drive continues. There are still a lot of people who have just received the first dose. After a month of receiving the second dose, probably their antibody levels will be really good, and that can lead to reducing the number of cases, transmission and severity. In the next two to three months, vaccines will make a drastic difference in reducing the caseload.”
Asked about the 22-day high of 2,315 new cases reported on April 1, both doctors stressed it wasn’t alarming and underlined that vaccination doesn’t guarantee full protection against coronavirus but reduces the severity of the disease and hospitalisation rate.
Dr Vyas pointed out: “Despite vaccinations, the number of cases was high on April 1 because vaccination doesn’t give us 100 per cent protection from developing Covid-19. So, there may be certain cases, a very few numbers, who despite being vaccinated can get Covid-19.”
Dr Kumar agreed: “Vaccine is not like a polio drop and doesn’t prevent you from getting coronavirus. It, however, reduces the severity. A person instead of landing in the ICU of a hospital can get treated and recover at home.”
Doctors pointed out that during Ramadan, residents need to be careful at iftar gatherings, and follow safety measures as there was risk of another wave.
“The number of new cases will drop faster, but we have to be careful, especially during Ramadan and Eid. We should be prepared for the next wave if people don’t follow social distancing during the Holy month and the festival,” Dr Kumar warned.
Dr Vyas pointed out that safety protocols must be maintained during Ramadan.
“We need to be very cautious. We need to follow all safety guidelines. If anyone has any symptoms, they must test as soon as possible to break the chain of transmission.”
With more than 50 per cent of the vaccinated population and vaccination drive continuing smoothly across the country, doctors reiterated that people must continue to take precautions even after taking the jab.
“Even after taking vaccination, we need to continue to follow safety measures like wearing masks, maintaining social distance and using hand sanitisers,” Dr Vyas said.
“Safety protocols have to be maintained. Pandemic doesn’t go away in six months but takes time, a minimum of two to three years,” Dr Kumar added.