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COVID-19 cases rising among migrants in Bahrain

On April 13, 2020

Bahrain’s Ministry of Health announced today that 212 positive cases of COVID-19 were recorded in the past 24 hours, making it the highest increase in a single day. Of these cases, 206 were migrant workers.  

This alarming rise is likely because of increased testing amongst clusters of workers who have been quarantined in crowded accommodation, without proper protective measures.   As of April 13, more than 400 out of 751 active cases in Bahrain are of migrants.  

To decongest the area and slow down the spread of infection, the government is planning to relocate migrants from these areas to public facilities such as schools and youth centres.

A new government initiative has installed mobile testing units in areas densely populated by low-income migrants, in order to randomly test them in their accommodations.  In the past 24 hours, 3321 tests have been carried out. 

Bahrain’s Ministry of Labour has also issued a circular today for employers and workers in the private sector regarding combating the spread of COVID-19 at workplaces and labour camps. 

The circular obliges employers to take test temperature regularly; provide protective face masks to workers at their worksites; regularly sterilise worksites and labour camps; provide a sufficient number of toilets at worksites and accommodation; and reduce the number of workers present in the same room in labour camps so that social distance of two metres can be maintained.