Dr Abdullah Al-Sanad

KUWAIT: The health ministry yesterday confirmed 20 new cases of coronavirus in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of cases in Kuwait to 255. The ministry’s spokesperson Dr Abdullah Al-Sanad said at the ministry’s daily press conference that seven cases – six Kuwaitis and one Filipino – are related to travel to the UK.

Sanad added that the 13 other cases include a Kuwaiti in contact with another Kuwaiti who had traveled to Saudi Arabia, nine Indians in contact with three Indians (under epidemiological investigation) and three Bangladeshis in contact with another Bangladeshi (under epidemiological investigation as well). He pointed out to the concentration of a number of cases resulting from contact with infected cases in Mahboula, Industrial Shuwaikh, and some commercial areas of the capital.

Health Minister Sheikh Dr Basel Al-Sabah earlier announced the recovery of three new cases, bringing the total of those who have recovered to 67. Twelve cases are in intensive care – three critical and nine stable – out of 188 cases in hospital, while 910 persons completed the quarantine period.

Meanwhile, Municipality Director General Ahmad Al-Manfouhi announced on Saturday the closure of cafes everywhere in Kuwait. The decision is applied to cafes in markets, shopping malls, fuel stations and rest stations on highways. However, they are allowed to continue delivery services from 5 am until 5 pm, when the daily partial curfew goes into effect. Manfouhi affirmed that the decision is part of precautionary and preventive measures that have been taken by the municipality to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The director general of funeral affairs Faisal Al-Awadhi announced a ban on visits to cemeteries. As for funerals, only relatives of the deceased are allowed to be present, in line with directions by the health ministry. Moreover, the municipality has set the burial time from 8:00 am until 3:00 pm, adding the body must be buried immediately.

The interior ministry also categorically denied reports circulating on social media about coronavirus cases among prisoners at the Central Prison. The ministry’s public relations and information department said in a statement that the directorate general for correctional institutions and execution of verdicts has affirmed that all preventive and precautionary measures have been taken to ensure inmates’ health.