Egypt’s Minister of Health and Population Hala Zayed met, on Monday, US Ambassador to Egypt Jonathan Cohen, to discuss boosting cooperation between the two countries in the healthcare field, especially COVID-19 vaccine supply.
During a joint press conference, Zayed applauded the intensive cooperation between the Egyptian and American governments in regard to the pandemic response.
She also expressed Egypt’s appreciation to the US government for providing 8 million doses of Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines during the coming period. The first shipment of Pfizer vaccine arrived Egypt last week comprising 1.6 million doses.
Furthermore, the minister pointed to the cooperation between Egypt and the US during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in the field of medical education, through major scientific institutions such as Harvard Medical School and the American Board.
Zayed expressed her intention to visit the US next month to further discuss these issues.
Interestingly, the minister also drew attention to the support of the US aid program to Egypt, which had a significant impact on family planning programs, motherhood and childhood programs, and education grants over the past years.
Zayed also appreciated the adoption by the US President Joe Biden of the initiative to support the developing countries with vaccines for COVID-19, on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly last month, given that Washington is one of the largest supporters to the “COVAX” Agreement and the equitable distribution of vaccines.
According to the Health Minister, 64 refrigerators were received to store Pfizer vaccines at a temperature of -70°, pointing out that negotiations are underway with Moderna to manufacture its coronavirus vaccine in Egypt through the factories of the Egyptian Holding Company for Biological Products and Vaccines (VACSERA).
Regarding the endemic situation in Egypt, Zayed affirmed the stability of the situation as “we have witnessed a constant rate of infections and deaths for 10 days,” praising the citizens’ response and their willingness to vaccinate. She added that if these rates stabilise during the month of October and adhere to preventive and precautionary measures, the country will be expected to witness a dwindling of the infection.
About 95% of workers in the higher education and scientific research ministry were vaccinated, in addition to vaccinating 70% of workers in the education and technical education ministry.
During the press conference, Cohen said that Egypt provided the US with shipments of medical aid at a time when the US people were in dire need of medicines and medical supplies to confront the pandemic.