Have you missed the most important coronavirus (COVID-19) updates of the week on the coronavirus in Qatar Weekly Update? Every Thursday, we take a moment to bring you all the updates and latest developments in the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic in Qatar.
Here's what happened in Week 17. Read below to know more about what's happening in Qatar and how the government is trying to control the situation in Week 18.
The Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) announced today's latest update on COVID-19 cases in Qatar.
Source: Ministry of Public Health
Qatar Airways' network will expand to more than 430 weekly flights to over 65 destinations by mid-July. The national carrier of Qatar continues to lead the global recovery of the aviation industry, relaunching 11 more destinations on July 1, its largest single day of restarts, in what Qatar Airways has dubbed ‘Take-off Wednesday’. By mid-July, the airline’s network will expand to over 430 weekly flights to more than 65 destinations with the addition of flights to more destinations.
The Civil Aviation Authority issued guidelines for health and safety in the field of aviation, in cooperation with the competent authorities in the MoPH, in conjunction with the plan for the gradual lifting of restrictions imposed in Qatar due to coronavirus (COVID-19).
The authority clarified, in a statement, that the effort targets operators and service providers in the state, and those involved in the civil aviation industry. It aims to provide them with guidance on how to facilitate the safe and gradual recovery of air traffic flow management and the consequent increase in passenger transport.
Many shopping complexes in Qatar announced that kids below 12 years were allowed to enter malls. However, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry has issued a circular recently regarding this.
The circular says that further to the control the second phase of the gradual lifting of restrictions, children below the age of 12 won’t be permitted to enter commercial centres, shopping centres and popular markets.
H.E. Minister of Public Health Dr. Hanan Mohamed Al Kuwari said Qatar had passed the peak of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the number of new confirmed cases continues to fall, stressing that the coronavirus (COVID-19) is still very much a threat to the health of the population.
H.E. Dr. Hanan called on everyone to follow the preventative measures of physical distancing, and seek medical attention immediately at the first sign of symptoms:
"If you have members of your family that are high risk, protect them by being extra vigilant."
Many shopping complexes in Qatar have announced today that kids below 12 years are allowed to enter malls. However, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry has issued a circular recently regarding this.
The circular says that further to the control the second phase of the gradual lifting of restrictions, children below the age of 12 won’t be permitted to enter commercial centres, shopping centres and popular markets.
The statement further mentions that most commercial activities will remain closed on Fridays and Saturdays, except for those offering vital services such as restaurants, food outlets, pharmacies.
Ministry has also withdrawn its previous decision setting time limits on commercial and service activities, therefore, management now can decide the work hours according to their requirements.
The MoPH announced 915 new confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19), and 2,401 people recovered, bringing the total number of people recovered from the virus in Qatar to 83,965. Two new deaths were also recorded.
The Ministry also recorded, the introduction of 7 cases to intensive care cases due to health complications resulting from the virus, bringing the total of cases that receive medical care in intensive care currently to 190 cases.
The Ministry clarifies that the new cases announced were diagnosed through emergency departments or different health centres due to the presence of symptoms they had, as well as between contacts with whom the infection was transmitted from people who were previously infected, as the MoPH continues to conduct investigative and proactive investigations, which contributes to early detection of cases.
The Ministry stated that the two deaths recorded had received the necessary medical care, and were aged 59 years and 65 years.
H.E. Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa bin Abdulaziz Al Thani chaired the regular Cabinet meeting via video conference technology. The most important decision made in today's meeting is that the cabinet has decided to end the working hours' restriction placed on the private sector and its employees present at the workplace, starting Thursday, 2 July 2020.
Within the framework of the implementation of the second phase of the plan to gradually lift the restrictions imposed in Qatar as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, the Permanent Committee for Industrial Area Affairs decided to cancel entry and exit points to and from the Industrial Area starting, Wednesday 1 July, while continuing to implement preventive measures, including the wearing of masks, reduced bus capacity to half, and the download and activation of the EHTERAZ application to ensure the health and safety of the area’s residents, visitors, and community members.
Hassad Company announced the reopening of Al Sailiya Central Market starting Wednesday, July 1, 2020, in line with the government plan to gradually lift the restrictions imposed, as a result of the COVID-19 epidemic.
In coordination with the MoPH, Aswaq for Food Facilities Management (a subsidiary of Hassad) took all the precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the virus in the Central Market. Starting with conducting complete sterilisation of the whole market, to holding briefing sessions with all the traders and suppliers to organise the workflow and to ensure that the health and safety procedures are followed.
Moreover, awareness posters that include a number of safety instructions, among them the necessity of having EHTERAZ app. were placed in the market, in various languages. In addition, thermal cameras were provided to ensure the safety of all workers and consumers.
The MoPH recorded 982 confirmed new cases of coronavirus (COVID-19), with 1,394 people having recovered from the virus, bringing the total number of people recovered from the disease in Qatar to 81,564 cases.
The MoPH announced the introduction of 9 cases to intensive care due to health complications resulting from infection with the virus, bringing the total number of cases receiving medical care in intensive care to 200.
The Ministry indicated the number of daily infections among citizens and residents (other than expatriate workers) increased compared to what it was in May, despite the overall decrease in the total daily infections in Qatar. The Ministry cautioned that most of the infections in these two categories belonged to members of the same family, and that the source of the infections is often due to social mixing with friends or other relatives. Care must be taken not to transmit the virus, especially to the elderly and those with chronic diseases.
Sidra Medicine, a member of Qatar Foundation, has developed a simplified and rapid, second COVID-19 testing method. The new method uses a pre-treatment of the specimen (swab sample) to replace the ribonucleic acid (RNA) extraction process, currently needed for COVID-19 testing.
The new method developed in-house at Sidra Medicine’s pathology laboratory, which is accredited by the College of American Pathologists (CAP), replaces the viral RNA extraction process by simple dilution with nuclease-free1 water and heat treatment. The diluted sample is treated at 65oC for 10 minutes before the detection of viral RNA using a specific type of RT-PCR reagent.
The Supreme Committee announced on Monday, 29 June 2020, that phase 2 of the reopening plan will proceed as planned on July 1. This decision is based on COVID-19 data and indicators. Here's a round-up of all the news and information regarding the reopening and precautionary measures for Phase 2.
Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC) announced it will conduct a research study on societal immunity against coronavirus (COVID-19) in Qatar. The PHCC said that the study comes within the framework of knowing the extent of the disease among the population of Qatar through people registered in the PHCC health centres.
Dr. Hamda Qotba, Director of Research at the PHCC, said that the sample chosen for the research study will be random and voluntary for anyone registered in the PHCC and can provide the information required to understand the spread of the coronavirus.
The MoPH extended the working hours of the Medical Commission Department, starting Sunday, July 5, 2020, to become from 7 am to 6 pm.
The extension of the working hours of the Medical Commission comes in an effort by the MoPH to increase its capacity in parallel with the commitment to all precautionary and preventive measures imposed by the coronavirus (COVID-19).
The following is a description of the implementation of the gradual lifting of the coronavirus (COVID-19) precautionary restrictions for the private healthcare sector for phase 2, starting 1 July 2020.
First: Work may continue in all health specialties.
Second: The clinical operations at the healthcare facilities should not exceed 60% of the maximum capacity.
Third: Continuing to provide tele-medicine services as much as possible.
Fourth: Continuing to suspend health services delivered in the home (home visits by doctors, physical therapy, daily nursing, etc.) except for nursing services provided through long-term contracts.
The Ministry of Commerce and Industry announced the second stage of the gradual lifting of restrictions on restaurants located in tourist areas. In line with the previous decisions and measures adopted by Qatar to preserve the health and safety of citizens and residents, and to limit the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), the following has been decided:
Restaurants are allowed to resume their operations in the following tourist areas: Souq Waqif, Souq Al Wakrah, The Pearl-Qatar, Katara Cultural Village, Restaurants and kiosks in sports clubs and tourist areas, Qatar Museums, Al Hazm, Msheireb - with precautionary measures as below:
The Ministry of Commerce and Industry announces the second stage of the gradual lifting of restrictions on malls, shopping centres, and street markets. In line with the previous decisions and measures adopted by Qatar to preserve the health and safety of citizens and residents, and to limit the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), the following has been decided:
This decision goes into effect on Wednesday, July 1, 2020, and may be subject to amendments and updates according to the latest developments in this regard. Any violation of this decision will subject perpetrators to legal accountability and procedures.
In Phase 2 of the gradual lifting of COVID-19 restrictions in Qatar, select souqs and street markets will be allowed to reopen.
We've put together a list of souqs and markets that will reopen in Phase 2. They are as following:
29 June 2020 06:35 pm
Countries across the globe have implemented some sort of travel advisory in an effort to contain the spread of the COVID-19 and Qatar is no exception to this. If you are planning to travel or wish to alter your existing travel plans in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, here are a few things you should you! Know the answers to the most frequently asked questions relating to travel.
29 June 2020 05:30 pm
Are QNL and other libraries in Qatar reopening for the public when Phase 2 starts on 1 July 2020 as Qatar gradually lifts restrictions placed on different establishments in March 2020 as the coronavirus spread across the country? Read on to find out!
Qatar National Library (QNL) looks forward to welcoming you from 15 July with limited services, limited hours and limited capacity.
Mathaf - Arab Museum of Modern Art Library: (will remain closed during Phase 2; reopening date not confirmed yet)
MIA Library: (will remain closed during Phase 2 till 2 August 2020 (Phase 3))
Maktaba Qatar: (will remain closed till they can clarify and finalise guidance for children; will post announcement soon; in the meantime, it's hosting activities on its Instagram for everyone; zoom camps and weekly storytimes and activities for library members).
Public Libraries: We've tried to get in touch some of the other public libraries like Al Rayaan Public Library, Al Khansa Public Library, Al Wakrah Public Library, Al Khor Public Library, Al Shamal Public Library directly and through the Ministry of Culture and Sports, but have not received any information yet on whether they will be opening in Phase 1 or not. We will keep you updated.
The MoPH recorded 693 confirmed new cases of coronavirus (COVID-19), with 1,468 people having recovered from the virus, bringing the total number of people recovered from the disease in Qatar to 80,170 cases. The Ministry also announced 3 new deaths
The ministry also announced the introduction of 9 cases to intensive care due to health complications resulting from infection with the virus, bringing the total number of cases receiving medical care in intensive care to 203.
The Ministry explained that the new cases were diagnosed through emergency departments or different health centres. The infection transmitted to them from people who had been previously infected, as the MoPH continues to conduct investigative and proactive investigations, which contributes to early detection of cases.
The Ministry said that the deaths recorded today had received the necessary medical care and were aged 59, 63 and 81 years old.
As Qatar plans to gradually lift COVID-19 restrictions, the Phase-2 (from July 1) will allow establishments operating in the activities of yachts and boats rental to resume their services. These establishments should adhere to the requirements adopted in the country to ensure public health and safety. In line with this, only families with a limit of 10 people maximum are allowed to rent yacht and boat for marine activities.
The Embassy of the Philippines in Qatar has issued an Embassy Advisory No. ALT-42-2020: Temporary Suspension of Operations of the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in Doha from 29 June to 12 July 2020, in which it has stated that:
"The Philippine Embassy in Qatar wishes to inform the public that the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in Doha is temporarily suspending its operations from 29 June to 12 July 2020 in compliance with health regulations (Decree Law No. 17 of 1990 in the Prevention of Infectious Diseases) as a matter of precaution and for the safety of our clientele, especially our OFWs."
This statement was released after all POLO officers and staff had to undergo swab testing on 28 June 2020 and were told by the MoPH that they had to undergo home quarantine for 14 days. The reason all POLO officers had to undergo testing is because some of the workers staying at the Migrant Workers and Other Filipinos Resource Center (MWOFRC) / POLO Shelter recently tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19). That is why, for the time being, POLO will not be allowed to accommodate more workers to the MWOFRC/Polo Shelter until further notice.
In line with the state’s directions to reopen the beaches, some beaches at Katara are ready to welcome visitors starting from July 1, 2020. Visitors will have access to the beaches no 3, 4, and 5 and precautionary health regulations and social distancing must be followed.
Beaches opening hours are 3 pm to 10 pm daily and swimming is allowed (beaches no 3 & 4) from 3 pm to sunset. Personal jet skis are permitted to operate from 3 pm to until sunset.
As Qatar moves on to Phase 2 of the gradual lifting of COVID-19 restrictions, more establishments and services are reopening. This includes restaurants, museums, heritage sites, souqs, and wholesale markets. This is in addition to the shops in malls, parks, and mosques that were reopened during Phase 1 which started on June 15. We've put together a list of the beaches that will reopen on July 1 - from public hotels to hotel and resort beaches in Qatar!
According to the announcement from the Supreme Committee for Crisis Management, all parks and beaches, as well as the Corniche, will be reopened for people of all ages while continuing to practice social distancing. Play areas will remain closed.
Click here to find out the locations and more information about the public and family beaches here.
Based on the available public health data and coronavirus (COVID-19) spread indicators, including passing the peak, flattening the curve, and reducing the virus’ reproduction rate, the Supreme Committee for Crisis Management has decided to launch phase 2 of the gradual reopening plan on July 1st 2020 as initially planned.
Phase 2 will include the following:
The Qatari Diar Real Estate Investment Company announced the reopening of the Lusail Marina Promenade with its facilities, Crescent Park and Lusail Marina Food Arena to the public starting 1 July 2020, according to the Qatari Diar Twitter Page.
After the recent update of the EHTERAZ app (version 5.1 for iOS; version 8.0.3 for Android) this June 2020, many users have reported that instead of the normal colour-coded QR code, a question mark was showing on the health status page of their app. This worried users since the EHTERAZ app is mandatory and part of the entry requirements for a lot of establishments in the country like supermarkets, malls, banks, parks, and government service centers. So if you have recently updated the app to its latest version and find a question mark on your health status, scroll down below to learn what to do next.
According to the technical support hotline 109, this is what users need to do when they get the question mark:
The MoPH announced the registration of 750 new confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) bringing the total number of positive cases in Qatar to 94,413 and stated that 1,477 more people have recovered from the virus, bringing the total number of people that have recovered in Qatar to 78,702. The total number of coronavirus-related deaths to date in Qatar was 110, with no recorded deaths.
The Ministry announced the introduction of 8 cases to intensive care due to health complications resulting from infection with the virus, bringing the total number of cases in intensive care to 201.
H.E. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani announced Saturday that the State of Qatar pledged $10 million to the World Health Organization (WHO) to support the finding of testing equipment, treatment, and vaccine for the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), in addition to its $20 million contribution to the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (GAVI).
The MoPH recorded 946 new confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19), and 1,528 people recovered from the disease, bringing the total number of people recovered from the disease in Qatar to 76,072 cases. It also announced 3 new deaths.
The Ministry announced that 7 people were admitted to intensive care due to health complications resulting from the virus, bringing the total of cases receiving intensive care to 200.
The MoPH explained that the new cases were diagnosed through emergency departments or different health centres. The infection transmitted to them from people who had been previously infected, as the MoPH continues to conduct investigative and proactive investigations, which contributed to the early detection of cases.
The Ministry stated that the two deaths that were recorded had received the necessary medical care and were aged 45, 59 and 79 years old.
The GCC Basketball Organising Committee on Thursday decided to officially postpone the organisation of the Gulf Cup for Basketball Clubs in Qatar until 2021. The championship was scheduled to be held in Qatar at its first date between 29 May and 6 June, but was postponed to September, before the decision to postpone the competition was decided.
The Bahrain Basketball Association received an official letter from the organising committee, confirming Qatar's right to keep hosting the championship next year.
The PHCC has confirmed that people who undergo testing at coronavirus (COVID-19) drive-through testing centres will not get gray colour in EHTERAZ application, as the colour will remain green after taking the medical swab. PHCC added that it will contact coronavirus (COVID-19) positive cases.
PHCC has established three coronavirus (COVID-19) drive-through testing centres in Al Waab, Al Thumama, and Labeeb, adding that only those who are invited are examined, as this service is not available to the public and it is limited only to those who meet the agreed national standards, as examination will be conducted only for cases that have received the invitation.
When do you think this coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in Qatar will end? What are you doing to flatten the curve? Are you following all the SOPs? Do let us know your thoughts in our Comments section. Like and share the article - it keeps us going!
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