National Medical Taskforce highlights precautionary measures during Ashura season

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Manama, Aug. 14 (BNA): President of the Supreme Council of Health (SCH) and Chairman of the National Medical Taskforce to Combat Coronavirus (COVID-19), Lieutenant-General Dr. Shaikh Mohammed bin Abdulla Al Khalifa, today held a virtual meeting with the Board of Directors of the Jaffari Endowments Council, led by Yussef bin Saleh Al-Saleh.

 

The meeting, held following the Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs’ announcement that prayers at mosques, collective worship and religious assemblies will remain suspended until the rate of the coronavirus (COVID-19) infections decreases to the levels set by the competent authorities, discussed the precautionary  measures to be implemented during the Ashura Commemoration season to ensure public health and safety.

 

It is also part of the efforts of the National Medical Taskforce to Combat Coronavirus to ensure continued commitment to precautionary measures, including the banning of public gatherings, which are the main cause of the spread of the pandemic.

 

The SCH chief stressed that the regional and global health conditions are still at stake, citing the World Health Organisation’s warning of a second wave of COVID-19, as many countries intend to ease restrictions and preemptive measures.

 

He said that based on the current epidemiological situation locally, regionally and internationally, and with the citizens' readiness to mark Ashura, a set of preventive measures have been taken, at this stage, in order to preserve the health and safety of the mourners and the community.

 

In this regard, he said that the Ashura commemoration should be restricted to remote broadcasting, and that only the mourning staff should be present at the Ma'atam (Community Centre).

 

He stressed that the mourning staff involved in broadcasting and direct transmission should adhere to all precautionary measures, especially face masks and social distancing, calling on community centres’ officials to record and confirm the staff names and ensure their safety through their pre-examination, in coordination with the Ministry of Health.

 

The National Medical Taskforce said that live broadcasting should not exceed 20 minutes in order to protect the safety of those present at the community centres.

 

It also affirmed that field studies have shown that gatherings are the main cause of the COVI-19 spread, which requires the prevention of processions and banquets, noting that home delivery of food would be an appropriate mechanism.

 

The National Medical Taskforce noted that it bets on the awareness and commitment of the authentic Bahraini people and their keenness to give priority to the lives, health and safety of everyone.

 

The Jaffari Endowments Council stressed the need for commitment to banning gatherings outside community centres and in public roads, and the closure of women community centres and home Majlises, noting that Ashura could be commemorated individually, within the same family at home or through social media networks.

 

The council also called on community centres’ managements to ensure that Ashura images and manifestations should be placed in the permissible space, within the vicinity of the community centres, and that loudspeakers should be operated during the live transmission period only.

 

Yussef bin Saleh Al-Saleh pointed out that the current circumstances require more cohesion and solidarity to face the pandemic, praying to Allah the Almighty to lift the pandemic and to protect the Kingdom of Bahrain from all evil.

 

WHQ