The number of confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in Egypt in the past week decreased by 11% compared to the week before, according to Minister of Health and Population Hala Zayed.
Zayed said that the nationwide vaccination programme against the virus will have an expected impact in reducing the number of deaths. She added that the vaccine will contribute to reducing the symptoms of the disease, prevent infection, and limit its spread.
Moreover, Mohamed Awad Tag El-Din, Advisor to the President for Health Affairs, said that the Ministry of Health and Population has started a nationwide vaccination programme for medical teams, in a step that ‘has been well prepared’.
He also said that Egypt is seeking to acquire the coronavirus vaccines available internationally, and has obtained licences from the concerned health authorities in the relevant countries.
During televised statements on Friday evening, Tag El-Din added that the number of available vaccines is insufficient for the entire population, meaning that some sectors have been given priority for vaccination.
Most notable of these are healthcare workers, due to the high risk they face in becoming infected with COVID-19, he said.
Tag El-Din also said that the vaccination campaigns started with health workers in isolation hospitals, who will be followed by those working at chest and fever hospitals, followed by other medical personnel. Also given high priority for vaccination against the virus are the elderly and those suffering from chronic disease.
Furthermore, Zayad noted that the vaccines will be provided through the electronic registration system, in order to cut out the human element at this stage of the process. It will also ensure good governance of the system, to increase confidence between the state and the citizen.
Egypt has signed a contract with major international pharmaceutical manufacturer, AstraZeneca, to reserve 50,000 doses of the company’s coronavirus vaccine.
These will be delivered in February, according to the minister, who also emphasised that Egypt is one of the first countries to have prepared a plan to confront and respond to infectious diseases.
Egypt was one of the latest countries from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region to launch electronic registration system for those interested in taking a COVID-19 vaccine.