Soccer Football - Africa Cup of Nations 2019 - Group A - Egypt v Zimbabwe - Cairo International Stadium, Cairo, Egypt - June 21, 2019 Egypt fans outside the stadium before the match REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh
CAIRO – 21 June 2019: Hospitals in the four Egyptian governorates that will host the matches of the 2019 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) are on high alert, announced the Ministry of Health in a statement on Friday.
The AFCON matches will take place at stadiums in Cairo, Alexandria, Ismailia, and Suez Canal governorate, starting on Friday until July 19. Two hospitals in every governorate were allocated for receiving possible injured or ill fans as 30 percent of the hospital beds were allocated for emergency cases.
Stadiums at the four governorates were medically prepared as two ambulances will be available at each stadium, while eight other ambulances will be in the vicinity of the stadium, the statement said, adding that hotels hosting the African teams were also medically prepared.
Moreover, the ministry allocated a 24-hour hotline number 998 for emergency calls in Arabic, English and French languages, said Ministry Spokesperson Khaled Megahed in the statement. Flyers of the ministry instructions will be distributed at the airports and maritime ports for the African fans.
A 24-hour central operation room has been formed to follow up the situations with all hospitals at the governorates besides receiving any possible reports on injury cases among the fans, Megahed added.
The AFCON will kick off on Friday evening at 8:00 Cairo local time at the Cairo International Stadium, where Egypt will face Zimbabwe. This year’s edition is considered the biggest Africa Cup of Nations ever with 24 teams.
The tournament was increased from 16 to 24 teams, in a similar format to Euro 2016, Egypt is hosting this tournament for a 5th time. The Pharaohs are the most successful team in the tournament's history, winning seven times.