KUWAIT: Kuwait reported 13 deaths from COVID-19 in the past two days, while the number of patients in intensive care units rose by 14 in the past 24 hours. The spike in deaths comes as speculation continues to grow whether the government will reintroduce lockdowns or other measures to curb the spread of the deadly disease.

The number of confirmed coronavirus infections in Kuwait rose by 492 yesterday to take the total to 110,568, while a sixfold increase in fatalities upped the death toll from the outbreak to 655, health ministry data showed. In terms of health zones, Ahmadi governorate recorded 134 cases, followed by 110 in Farwaniya, 97 in Hawally, 87 in the Capital and 64 in Jahra, ministry spokesman Dr Abdullah Al-Sanad revealed.

The number of people hospitalized with the virus stands at 7,191, of whom 139 are in intensive care units, said Sanad. He added 2,805 swab tests were conducted in the past day, taking the total to 779,538 tests so far, while 698 people recovered from the virus in the last 24 hours to raise the total to 102,722 recoveries. Kuwait reported seven COVID-19 deaths and 635 new infections on Friday, with a total of 125 patients in ICUs. Sanad urged the public to be mindful of health precautions, asserting that following social distancing was the only way to halt the spread of the virus.

The government had warned that recent indicators from the spread of the coronavirus in the country are alarming. "What we have witnessed in the past few days of not applying health guidelines strictly is alarming," HH the Prime Minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah said during Thursday's National Assembly session. "The death rate has increased and so has the number of admissions into intensive care units and occupancy of hospital beds," he noted.

The premier said these indicators are alarming and warned that the government will implement necessary health measures to contain the spread of the pandemic. He however did not elaborate on the type of measures the government might take. Kuwait had lifted a five-month-long curfew on Aug 30, 2020.