Reimposing lockdowns depends on society’s compliance: Health minister


RIYADH — The Health Minister Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah confirmed that Saudi Arabia does not plan to return to lockdowns and further restrictions. However, this would depend largely on society’s knowledge and compliance with precautionary measures in order to resume lifting restrictions, he said.

“We are in the same boat,” Al-Rabiah said in an interview with Al-Arabiya TV on Saturday. “If we all comply, then we will make it to safety. Whoever doesn’t comply will take us back.”

The health minister said Saudi Arabia continues to pursue the best available treatments, and if a vaccine becomes available, the Kingdom will strive to provide it as soon as possible.

The health minister also said the death toll in the Kingdom has remained low compared to other G20 countries. Despite it having the highest number of cases in the GCC, 480 people out of a total 83,384 have died due to COVID-19 complications in Saudi Arabia.

More than 70 percent of Saudi Arabia’s confirmed coronavirus cases have recovered so far as a result of the Kingdom’s treatment protocols.

“We have treatment protocols developed by Saudi experts,” Al-Rabiah said. “These protocols are continuously updated with any new global developments related to treatments and procedures.” — SG