Saudi health minister warns of second COVID-19 wave as infections increase

Sun, 2021-01-31 14:23

DUBAI: Saudi Arabia’s minister of health warned on Sunday of a second COVID-19 wave that could lead to a return to stricter measures.

“The second wave of the pandemic is bigger than the first, and we are not immune to it,” Tawfiq Al-Rabiah said during a press briefing.

The minister highlighted the importance of adhering to preventative measures to limit the spread of the virus.

“This is a very difficult period and it is imperative that we take the pandemic seriously,” he added.

The minister echoed calls for public awareness that he made last week after an uptick in the number of daily coronavirus cases were recorded in Saudi Arabia.

“We have unfortunately seen during the past days a noticeable increase and a continuous rise in the numbers of infections, and among the most important reasons for this rise are gatherings of all kinds and laxity in applying preventive measures, and this is dangerous,” the minister said.

Meanwhile, the health ministry announced three deaths from COVID-19 and 261 new infections on Sunday.

Of the new cases, 93 were recorded in Riyadh, 53 in the Eastern Province, 49 in Makkah, 16 in Madinah, nine in Asir, seven in Najran and one in Jazan.

The total number of recoveries in the Kingdom increased to 359,573 after 274 more patients recovered from the virus.

A total of 6,375 people have succumbed to the virus in the Kingdom since the pandemic began and 368,074 have contracted the disease.

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