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Dubai allows sports and music events for vaccinated people

The Dubai Media Office said that as of Monday, entertainment venues can operate up to 70 percent full, with a maximum of 1,500 people indoors and 2,500 people outdoors. Hotels can also now operate at full capacity.

May 17, 2021 / 05:02 PM IST
Dubai | Representative Image. (PC- Reuters)

Dubai | Representative Image. (PC- Reuters)

Dubai said on Monday it now allowed people to attend sports events and concerts, if they have been vaccinated against coronavirus.

The emirate opened its doors to tourism in July last year, but has maintained strict policies on social distancing and wearing masks, alongside an energetic vaccination campaign.

The Dubai Media Office said that as of Monday, entertainment venues can operate up to 70 percent full, with a maximum of 1,500 people indoors and 2,500 people outdoors.

Hotels can also now operate at full capacity.

Tourism has long been an economic mainstay of Dubai, which welcomed more than 16 million visitors in 2019 before the pandemic struck.

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How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

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Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

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"Permits will be given for community sports events, concerts and social and institutional events like gala dinners and award ceremonies ... on the condition that attendees and participants have been vaccinated for Covid-19," it said in a statement.

Up to 100 people can attend weddings at hotels or other venues, but all must be vaccinated, it said.

Wedding celebrations at home are limited to 30 people, and although vaccination is not required for private events, authorities said guests should wear masks and maintain social distancing.

The UAE -- which is made up of seven emirates including the capital Abu Dhabi -- has recorded a total of more than 546,000 cases of Covid-19, including 1,631 deaths.

The Emirates, which has a population of approximately 10 million, said Sunday it had administered 11.4 million jabs.

Follow our full coverage of the coronavirus pandemic here.
AFP
first published: May 17, 2021 05:02 pm

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