Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi emphasised the need for implementing the highest standards of infection control across the country as the battle against the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues.
He added that all necessary medical needs and supplies be supplied to preserve the health and safety of healthcare workers, and to assist them in carrying out their work.
Al-Sisi also directed the government to reach a compromise between public and private hospitals, to facilitate using all the country’s medical capabilities to provide the required medical services to citizens.
The president made his remarks during a follow up meeting on Wednesday, with Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly, and the ministers of education, health, higher education, finance, interior, and defence. During the meeting, he received updates on the coronavirus pandemic in Egypt.
He also ordered for awareness campaigns to be intensified to educate citizens on how to coexist with the virus, and the state’s efforts in this regard.
On Wednesday, Egypt reported 1,455 new coronavirus (COVID-19) cases, and 36 new deaths, raising the country’s total number of confirmed cases to 38,284 cases, and the total number of fatalities to 1,342 deaths. A total of 10,289 cases have recovered and were discharged from quarantine facilities at hospitals.
During the meeting, Minister of Health Hala Zayed briefed Al-Sisi on the latest updates on the virus and her ministry’s efforts in combating it. She pointed out that the virus’ spread in Egypt remains at safe levels compared to other countries with a similar amount of population to Egypt.
She added that the number of critical cases has declined, stressing the capability of the Egyptian health sector in combating the crisis.
Al-Sisi directed the government to take all required measures to assure the health and safety of secondary school students as they sit their final Thannaweya Amma exams later in June.
Minister of Education Tarek Shawky reviewed the measures taken by his ministry in coordination with the Ministers of Health, Defence, and Interior, to run the Thannaweya Amma exams.
Also on Wednesday, the director of the Central Public Health Laboratories (CPHL), Dr Nancy El-Guindy, said that the CPHL conducts over 6,000 PCR tests a day, to detect coronavirus cases.
“All these PCR tests are free of charge for citizens who are suspected to have the virus,” she said.
In a phone call to MBC, El-Guindy added that the laboratories were providing the service for those requesting certificates to travel when airports reopen to international flights. Each test costs EGP 1000.
She pointed out that 30 laboratories across Egypt conducting the tests were inaugurated four weeks ago, whilst some hospitals admit coronavirus patients such as the Ahmed Maher Hospital, the Abbasiya Chest Hospital, and the Al-Matarya Hospital.
El-Guindy advised citizens not to undergo PCR test before visiting a hospital and conducting chest x-rays and blood analysis in accordance with World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines. She called on citizens to wear face masks whilst out in public areas to limit the spread of the virus.