Dozens of members from the ruling Saudi Arabia royal family, as many as more than 150, have been infected already with Corona virus in recent weeks, NY Times reported.
Saudi Prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Abdulaziz Al Saud – the governor of the capital Riyadh who is in his 70s of age – now in intensive care unit ICU after sever symptoms of corona virus, according to The New York Times.
King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) are already retreated into isolation to avoid the pandemic.
Doctors of an elite royal hospital that treats just royals are preparing 500 more beds for an expected influx of patients.
“Directives are to be ready for VIPs from around the country,” the operators of the elite facility, the King Faisal Specialist Hospital, wrote in a “high alert” sent out electronically on Tuesday to senior doctors and later obtained by the Times.
“We don’t know how many cases we will get but high alert,” said the message, which instructed “all chronic patients to be moved out ASAP” and only “top urgent cases” will be accepted, according to the newspaper.
The alert added any infected staff members will now be treated at a less elite hospital to save room for royals.
There are thousands of Saudi princes from royal family. Many traveled regularly to the Europe and some are believed to have contracted the virus abroad and brought it back to Saudi Arabia, the report said.
The kingdom of round about 33 million people has reported 2,932 cases and 41 deaths.
The country, home to Islam’s holiest sites Mecca of Ka’aba and Medina -the resting place of THE LAST MESSENGER OF GOD HAZRAT MOHAMMAD S.A.W.W, banned the year-round Umrah pilgrimage and sealed off the areas in early March.
Travel in and out of the country, as well as between provinces, has since been largely restricted almost banned, and four states and five major cities have been placed under 24-hour curfew.
Worse to come
So far, mostly members of lower class of the royal family who have been infected, a source familiar with the situation told the Times. The vast majority of the pandemic Corona virus cases in the country have been in migrant labour camps and slums around Mecca and Medina.
But as the outbreak in the country spreads, Salman, the 84-year-old king, secluded himself on an island palace near Jeddah, while the crown prince has moved to a remote site on the Red Sea coast.
A Saudi health minister on Tuesday warned about the sudden outbreak in the country may only be beginning.
“Within the next few weeks expecting, studies predict the number of infections will range from a minimum of 10,000 to a maximum of 200,000,” Tawfiq al-Rabiah said, according to the official Saudi Press Agency.
The Saudi royal family is estimated to have about more than 15,000 members.