MOH News
COVID-19 Monitoring Committee Holds its 58th Meting
17 April 2020

​​​​On Friday morning, the COVID-19 Monitoring Committee held its 58th meeting. Chaired by the Minister of Health, Dr. Tawfiq bin Fawzan Al-Rabiah, the meeting was attended by the committee members, who represent the relevant government agencies. During the meeting, all relevant COVID-19 updates and reports were reviewed. The committee has discussed the global epidemiological situation, as well as the cases reported locally and their health condition. All precautionary measures carried out at the points of entry into the Kingdom will continue in full, the Committee stressed, and will be further tightened. The Committee commended the citizens’ compliance with the curfew, and called on them to stay home, and refrain from going unless necessary.​

The meeting was followed by a joint press conference, the participants in which included Dr. Muhammad al-Abdulaali, MOH spokesman, Lt. Col. Talal Al-Shalhoub, the Ministry of Interior spokesman and Ms. Ebtesam Al-Shehri, the Ministry of Education (MOE) spokeswoman.

The MOH spokesman mentioned that the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases worldwide has amounted to more than 2,100,000 cases, of which 550,000 cases have recovered to date. As for the COVID-19 death toll, it has jumped to 146,000 deaths.

 “Speaking of the Kingdom,” Al-Abdulaali said, “we have 762 new confirmed cases, to be added to the total number of cases.” He mentioned that the new cases were reported in the following cities: 325 in Makkah, 197 in Madinah, 142 in Jeddah, 35 in Al-Hafouf, 24 in Riyadh, 18 in Dammam, 4 in Jubail, 3 in Taif, 2 in Al-Moyah, 2 in Bisha, 2 in Khobar, 1 in Missan, 1 in Yanbu, 1 in Ras Tanura, 1 in Al-Mezalef, 1 in Khamis Mushayt, 1 in Najran and 1 in Al-Qunfudah. 

He mentioned that this brings the total confirmed COVID-19 cases in the Kingdom to 7,142 cases, including 6,006 active cases receiving medical care. Of these, there are 74 critical cases, whereas the health condition of the rest is reassuring. The number of new recoveries is 59, bringing the total recoveries to 1,049 cases. And the number of new deaths is 4, bringing the total deaths to 87 cases. The new deaths are all non-Saudis, 2 in Jeddah, 1 in Makkah, and 1 in Tabuk, and their ages between 41-82 years, he said.  

Al-Abdulaali said specialized medical teams are visiting high-risk areas to perform COVID-19 active surveillance (field testing), which resulted in detecting half of the cases announced today (400 cases). He said this field screening campaign in densely-populated areas by the medical teams, is one of the preventive medicine packages, and will continue in the coming days.
He called on all to stay home and practice social distancing to fight COVID-19 and to help curb its spread.

He reiterated that anyone who develops symptoms, or is willing to get medical advice, can use the self-assessment application ‘Mawid’, or call 937, which works around the clock.
For his part, Lt. Col. Al-Shalhoub, the Ministry of Interior spokesman expressed his appreciation to citizens and residents for their commitment to the preventive measures and cooperation with the security men to implement the curfew. 

In the context of the strenuous efforts to fight COVID-19 exerted by the government, and in order to facilitate the services provided for citizens, the ministry has extended the expiry dates of national IDs for two months, allowing citizens to renew the expired documents electronically without the need to visit the civil affairs offices.

Also, driving license can be renewed electronically via Absher platform without the need to provide periodic vehicle inspection certificate and vision test report, he said.
The Interior Ministry spokesman reaffirmed that the security authorities will continue enforcing all directives related to curfew and movement and punishing violators.
Ms. Al-Shehri, the Education Ministry spokeswoman said, “We highly appreciate the great support of the Custodian of the Tow Holy Mosques and his Crown Prince to the distance education for male and female students while schools are closed”.

She said that in light of the current extraordinary circumstances, the Minister of Education decided that students of all grades will progress to the next year of their study program after the ministry completed the curriculum for all academic levels. 
 
The decision emphasized the continuation of the distance education until the end of academic calendar to recognize the efforts exerted by the students who worked hard with their teachers to improve their grades through the distance education.  

The distance education will continue voluntarily during the summer vacation for all grades and classes, she said, adding that if the second semester’s grades were higher than the first semester, the higher grade will be counted. 

If the second semester’s grades were worse than the first, however, the school would automatically consider the better grade. And the students who were not evaluated for the second semester will be given another chance at the beginning of the next school year.

She said these evaluations would continue to ensure the students are graded fairly and that their levels are addressed in the coming year.
She said the evaluations aim to know the levels of students and to determine the educational process for the next year.

Ms. Al-Shehri said that the ministry will be launching online competitions on Quran recitation and memorizing for students during the summer and Ramadan, including general knowledge national values. 

Concluding her statement, the Ministry of Education spokeswoman extended her thanks to the teachers for their sincere efforts and interaction with their students, as well as the parents for their cooperation during such extraordinary circumstances.  






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