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Coronavirus: UAE warns against using chlorine dioxide products to combat Covid-19

Wam/Abu Dhabi
Filed on August 19, 2020 | Last updated on August 19, 2020 at 06.19 am
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Medicine containing chlorine dioxide is seen at the Farmacia Boliviana, amid the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Cochabamba, Bolivia, July 21, 2020

The UAE Government's official spokesman Dr Omar Al Hammadi at Tuesday's daily coronavirus briefing.

Government spokesman Al Hammadi warns that chlorine dioxide can cause lung, kidney and heart problems.

The UAE Government has warned people about using products that wrongly claim to fight Covid-19, including a product that releases chlorine dioxide gas.

Dr Omar Al Hammadi, the official spokesperson for the UAE Government, on Tuesday said such a product incorrectly claimed to be able to eliminate the coronavirus before it enters the human body.

Also read: Combating coronavirus: UAE conducts over 6 million Covid-19 tests till date

Dr Al Hammadi stressed that these products do not provide protection from Covid-19 and such claims that they can kill the virus are not based on any reliable scientific evidence.

Speaking at the UAE's daily coronavirus briefing in Abu Dhabi, he warned that chlorine dioxide can cause lung, kidney and heart problems.

He pointed out that the presence of the word 'safe' on a product does not mean that it is effective in treating certain diseases, but only means that the product is not harmful to the human body. It may not be beneficial to a person's health unless a reliable scientific body states it is valid for treating certain diseases with certain doses, for a certain period of time and under specific conditions with close control.

Dr Al Hammadi warned that the danger of using these products comes not only from their potential side effects, but also in people's reliance on their ability to provide protection instead of following proven precautionary measures such as wearing masks, social distancing and personal hygiene. These methods all have a proven effectiveness in combating the spread of Covid-19.

Regarding the best health and safety practices to be followed in gyms, Dr Al Hammadi said people should refrain from going to health clubs or gyms if they are feeling sick. When they do visit a gym, they should maintain physical distancing of at least two metres from others, wear masks and sterilise their hands before and after using shared equipment.

People should also take care when using their own personal gym equipment, and not share it with other gym goers, he added.

The spokesperson added that the possibility of infection increases when people gather in large numbers, with team sports more likely to spread the virus than individual sports and outdoor activities less dangerous than indoor activities. -He said gym goers must be organised and disciplined to prevent crowds and to ensure that all facilities are sterilised continuously.

Dr Al Hammadi said people who find they have trouble breathing while wearing a mask and practising intense sports such as running, should only conduct these kinds of exercises outside or in a well-ventilated space that makes physical distancing possible.

Dr Al Hammadi ended the briefing by stressing to the public that the recent decline in the number of Covid-19 cases does not mean the elimination of the virus.

He cited an alarming increase in the number of infections as an indication that Covid-19 cannot be overlooked and that people need to continue to follow all of the preventive health and safety measures, the most important of which is physical distancing and avoiding large gatherings and visits.

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