Dhofar Governorate went under lockdown with new Covid-19 protocols on Saturday. The start of the lockdown has been advanced by three hours, and closure of it has been extended by one hour.
Thus the governorate would have daily 11 hours of lockdown, unlike seven hours in the rest of the Sultanate. From Saturday, Dhofar went under lockdown from 6 pm to 5 am, whereas lockdown timing in the rest of the country is from 9 pm to 4 am.
The extension in the lockdown period in Dhofar will be effective till further notice as a mark of streamlining measure in the wake of the rise in Covid-19 cases in the governorate.
The move is part of the implementation of the decision of the Supreme Committee on Covid-19, which on Friday called for an extension of the ban on commercial activities and movement of individuals and vehicles at night in the governorate.
A source at the Directorate General of Specialised Medical Care in the Ministry of Health said that out of the latest 111 new cases in the governorate, 54 admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU), while 57 to the ward. The increased number of ICU cases is a worrying trend for the governorate.
Keeping in mind the ongoing holy month of Ramadhan, the Supreme Committee has asked for strict adherence to the social distancing guidelines like wearing facemasks in mosques and public places. It has also asked people to avoid gatherings during funerals, weddings, and iftar.
Meanwhile, the MoH brushed aside the social media reports regarding the lack of ventilators at Sultan Qaboos Hospital in Salalah.
The ministry confirmed its readiness to deal with the pandemic in the region and added the capacity in all hospitals had been increased. It praised the role of health workers and called upon everyone to rely only on correct information.
The ministry warned the rumour mongers of stern action for spreading unfounded allegations and reports that create confusion.
Starting Saturday, Mwasalat, the public transport operator of the Sultanate, suspended the Salalah bus service till further notice.
Private bus operators, however, are continuing with their services as usual.