COVID-19 in Egypt: 547 new cases on Saturday, anal swab test won’t be adopted

Egypt’s Health Ministry announced 547 new coronavirus cases on Saturday, bringing the country’s total number of confirmed cases up to 165,418.

The total number of COVID-19-related deaths has now reached 9,263 nationwide, after the ministry announced 46 deaths on Saturday.

And 493 patients were discharged from quarantine at isolation hospitals, raising Egypt’s total number of fully-recovered cases to 129,293.

The country has officially entered the second wave of the pandemic, after cases rose steadily throughout November and December.

The second wave hit its peak on December 30, when the health ministry reported 1,411 new cases. Since then, the case count has plunged.

Government officials continue to urge the public to adhere to precautionary measures against the virus, and the Egyptian Cabinet has called on authorities to strictly enforce the country’s mask mandate, which applies to all public transportation and indoor public spaces.

Egypt launched its vaccination campaign on January 24, however, officials are predicting a slow rollout as the country waits for the arrival of vaccine orders.

The ministry is currently using China’s Sinopharm vaccine and expects to receive doses of the UK’s AstraOxford vaccine in the near future.

Meanwhile, the Presidential Advisor for Health and Prevention affairs Mohamed Awad Tag El-Din said on Saturday that Egypt will not be adopting the new anal swab test for detecting coronavirus.

The advisor’s statement came in the midst of a media uproar in China due to some healthcare facilities in the country using anal swabs to test for the virus.

During phone-in with the satellite channel Sada al-Balad, the Presidential Advisor also pointed out that the new case count released daily reflects the data of Egypt’s Health and Population Ministry, adding “We have not denied that there are cases outside the registrations of the Ministry’s hospitals.”

Tag El-Din pointed out that diversity of vaccine sources is of the utmost importance to ensure there are enough, and Egypt seeks to obtain an extended supply of safe vaccines to combat the virus.

He stressed that the country is working hard to secure more doses of the vaccine, and is currently in talks with Chinese and Russian  manufacturers.

IMAGE: In this April 2, 2020, file photo taken through a tinted car window, a technician takes a nasal swab for a coronavirus detection test at a drive-thru testing facility in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (AP Photo/Jon Gambrell, File)

Related Articles

Back to top button