Coronavirus: Saudi Arabia says labs able to conduct 53,000 COVID-19 tests daily

Health workers perform a nose swab test during a drive through coronavirus test campaign held in Diriyah hospital in the Saudi capital Riyadh on May 7, 2020. (AFP)

Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Health said labs across the Kingdom are now able to conduct over 53,000 COVID-19 tests daily as part of efforts against the novel coronavirus pandemic, officials announced in a statement.

The capacity to conduct tests at the beginning of the pandemic could not exceed more than 1,000 tests per day, the ministry added in a statement on Friday.

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The spokesman for the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Health, Dr. Mohammed Al-Abdulaali, had indicated that there was a fear cases would pass the 200,000 mark by the end of April, but that preventive measures contributed to milestone not being crossed until three months later.

Coronavirus cases in Saudi Arabia officially surpassed the 200,000 mark on Friday after 4,193 new infections were detected in the last 24 hours.

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Most of the cases were found in Dammam, where officials recorded 431 new cases. Al Hufof recorded 399 new infections, while Riyadh recorded 383. The rest of the new cases were reported in cities and provinces around the country.

Fifty people died due to COVID-19 on Friday. This brings the virus-related death toll in the Kingdom to 1,802.

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Last Update: Saturday, 04 July 2020 KSA 00:52 - GMT 21:52
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