Sat, 23 Jan 2021 - 10:34 GMT
A vaccine vial - Reuters
CAIRO - 23 January 2021: Egypt's Health Ministry said in a Friday statement that 680 new coronavirus cases were detected, upping the total number of confirmed cases to 161,143.
Spokesman for the Health Ministry Khaled Megahed said 49 patients have died from the virus over the past 24 hours, raising the death toll to 8,902.
As many as 573 patients were discharged from isolation hospitals after receiving necessary medical care, taking the number of recovered cases to 126,176 so far, the spokesman said.
The number of coronavirus cases has dropped by 50 percent within a month, including those self-quarantining in homes, Health Minister Hala Zayed said.
Doses of Chinese Sinopharm’s coronavirus vaccines are now available at a number of quarantine hospitals nationwide so that they are provided to the medical teams, the Ministry of Health said on Saturday.
Vaccines will be provided to the medical staff in these hospitals, as they are among the priority groups for being in continuous close contact with coronavirus patients.
The vaccine will be distributed starting on Sunday from Abu Khalifa hospital allocated for quarantine in the northern governorate of Ismailia, the ministry said.
The vaccine is safe and has been subjected to all required tests that proved its efficacy, the ministry said.
The ministry referred to a study that found that the Sinopharm vaccine has shown 86 percent efficacy against coronavirus, 99 percent efficacy in producing antibodies to the novel virus and 100 percent efficacy in preventing cases from showing moderate or severe symptoms.
More than 36 centers have been allocated nationwide for citizens to be given the vaccine, the ministry said.
Priority groups also include the medical staff in chest and fevers hospitals, as well as cancer or kidney failure patients, older people and persons suffering from chronic diseases.
Young people under the age of 18 and pregnant women are prohibited from receiving the vaccine, the ministry said.
The ministry advised all people included in the priority groups to be keen on receiving the treatment, given that it is optional.
Expected side affects of the Sinopharm vaccine is a feeling of pain and redness, stiffness and itching where the vaccine was taken, fever, headache, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, cough, allergy, pain in muscles and joints and convulsions.
The ministry said these side effects generally do not require a certain treatment and usually go away without any medication.
The vaccine is injected in the upper arm. It consists of two shots, 21 days apart.
Egypt received its first batch of the Chinese Sinopharm vaccine in December, consisting of 50,000 doses. Presidential advisor for health affairs Awad Tag El-Din said Egypt contracted with Gavi to obtain 20 million vaccine doses.