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Tuesday, June 22, 2021

11-year-old child dies of COVID-19 in Qatar amid rising numbers

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The Ministry of Public Health said that an 11-year-old has become the latest COVID-19 fatality in Qatar.

An 11-year-old child has died after contracting the novel coronavirus, Qatar’s ministry of health confirmed on Friday, amid a surge in infections in the country.

The unidentified child suffered from chronic illness, a statement by the ministry confirmed, noting they were “receiving the necessary medical care”.

The death brings the total number of COVID-19 related fatalities in Qatar to 250.

It came as health authorities confirmed 398 new cases of COVID-19, the majority of which from local community cases, with just 27 from travellers returning from abroad.

Earlier this week, a source at Hamad Medical Corporation told Doha News some 88% of new cases recorded in the last three weeks have been among Qatari citizens and white collar professionals.

On Wednesday, the Supreme Committee for Crisis Management announced new health and safety restrictions during a press conference, amid concerns over a rise of cases in the country.

Among the measures, imposed from February 4, is restricting the number of those in the workplace, closing children’s playgrounds and indoor amusement parks, limiting the capacity of indoor sports and fitness areas such as gyms, and banning indoor weddings (unless held at home) while restricting the number of attendees of at home weddings, both indoor and outdoor, to 10 and 15 respectively.

Read also: Qatar imposes new COVID restrictions, but is it enough?

With the more drastic restrictions being imposed on activities that the aforementioned groups participate most in, it is hoped that the rise in numbers will begin to subdue.

Head of Infectious Diseases at Hamad Medical Corporation Dr. Abdul Latif Al-Khal said that the size of the second wave hitting Qatar is not clear, but taking precautionary decisions and community cooperation will curb the intensity of this wave.

Since the COVID vaccine became available at the end of 2020, Qatar has expanded and continued to employ its campaign in order to successfully fight the pandemic and prevent the spread of the disease.

Prior to the new year, Qatar received its first batch of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines. The first group to receive the shots were aged 70 or over, people with chronic illnesses, and frontline workers.

On January 1st, Qatar recorded 208 new cases while at the end of the month, 351 new daily cases were confirmed. The peak was on January 30, with 363 new cases on that day.

According to the Ministry of Public Health [MoPH], Qatar saw an 85% increase in COVID-19 cases being admitted to the hospital in January compared to December.

Despite the concerning numbers, Qatar has had a coronavirus fatality rate of 0.14%, one of the lowest in the world.


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