Business establishments including shopping malls in Dubai will no longer have to use thermal scanners and conduct temperature checks to prevent the spread of COVID-19, Dubai Economy announced on Wednesday.
This is part of the new update on protocols and regulations for reopening businesses with effect from January 1, 2021, the authority announced.
“Thermal scanner and manual temperature checks are not required anymore,” Dubai Economy said in a Tweet on Wednesday. The update also applies to valet parking protocols. As per the update, the requirement for covering the seats and steering wheel with plastic will stand removed, the Tweet added.
Zero closures, fines
Earlier on Wednesday, Dubai Economy tweeted that the business community in Dubai continues with the highest level of compliance with the guidelines with zero fines, zero closures, and zero warnings issued. The inspections at 449 businesses found that they were all fully compliant with the precautionary measures that are set to limit the spread of COVID-19, the authority said.
It was the second consecutive day without any violations recorded. As many as 455 businesses that were inspected on Tuesday were also found to comply with the regulations.
There was no closure or fine recorded after inspections conducted in hundreds of commercial establishments in the past several days as well. However, a few business outlets were issued warning.
Adhere to protocol
Dubai Economy has urged all commercial establishments in Dubai to strictly adhere to all precautionary measures against COVID-19 during New Year celebrations to ensure the safety of the community and to avoid any fines. Precautionary measures include wearing the masks, applying physical distancing, and following the sanitisation protocols.
What doctors say
Removal of thermal cameras and temperature checks from malls is being hailed as a confidence building mechanism by the health care community. These scanners and temperature checks were being carried out at all indoor public places for the last several months as a tool to prevent the spread of COVID-19 .
Dr Atul Aundhekar, CEO of Avivo Health Care Group explained: “Detecting temperature by thermal scanners or with sensors was not really helping. Thermals scanners were absorbing the thermal energy from people . Temperature can happen due to any kind of illness and people are smart enough to take antipyretic medications. So this was giving a false sense of security.,” said Dr Aundhekar. He feels the government is acting very rationally and doing the right thing.
Follow the four COVID-19 protection protocols
Ultimately everyone has to be responsible and continue practising social distancing, wearing the mask in a correct fashion, frequently washing hands and using hand santisers. It is these protocols followed by everyone which will keep us protected, explained Dr Aundhekar.
The Dubai Economic Department has also discontinued the practice of valets providing plastic sheets and covers on steering wheels and dirver’s seat to prevent spread of COVID-19. This practice was being followed at all malls, hotels and public parking places offering valet services.
“This practice too was providing a false sense of security. The valets at all these places were manually placing these covers on the steering wheel and seats. So this was not ruling out any chances of contamination in the event that someone handling your car was positive or in touch with another positive person. Transmission of the virus from inanimate surfaces to the nasopharyngeal openings is a challenge. People thought their car had the covers on the wheels so they are safe. But that is not true. Instead of this, it is important for each one of us to be constantly vigilant, avoid gatherings, follow protocols and be responsible and isolate if we test positive,” explained Dr Aundhekar.