The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia reported on Friday 4,884 COVID-19 cases in 24 hours, a significant drop from 5,591 cases on Thursday, according to the Ministry of Health.
Two new deaths were also reported on Friday, bringing the Kingdom’s COVID-19 death toll to 8,916. Meanwhile, critical cases in the Kingdom rose to 591 on Friday from 540 on Thursday.
Although case numbers have been climbing rapidly in recent weeks as the more-transmissible omicron variant spreads globally, the Friday report sees a reduction in new infections by 707 cases when compared to the previous update.
Saudi Arabia recorded its first omicron case in early December, thought to have come from an undisclosed north African country. The total number of cases in the Kingdom has now reached 643,211.
Meanwhile, 6,090 individuals have recovered from COVID-19 in the past 24 hours in contrast to 5,238 on Thursday, adding to the total recovery tally of 590,140.
So far, the Kingdom has administered 54,840,457 vaccine doses. Health authorities continue with the Kingdom’s vaccination plan in an effort to get the majority of the population vaccinated.
On Tuesday, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the World Health Organization chief said that the pandemic is “nowhere near over,” cautioning against a narrative that the fast-spreading omicron variant is risk-free.
In recent weeks, the Kingdom introduced new COVID-19 restrictions and fines of $266 (1,000 Saudi riyal) for those who break social distancing rules, and $266,000 (100,000 riyal) for repeat offenders.
Social distancing is required at Mecca’s Grand Mosque and other public places. Masks are also required in public places, indoors and outdoors.