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Egypt’s covid crisis has reached a dangerous level, health ministry sources say

September 3, 2021 at 12:54 pm

A robot to assist physicians in running tests on suspected COVID-19 coronavirus patients at a private hospital in Egypt’s Nile delta city of Tanta, on March 20, 2021 [KHALED DESOUKI/AFP via Getty Images]

Sources in Egypt’s Ministry of Health have said that coronavirus in the country has reached a dangerous level due to the government’s neglect of precautionary measures.

The state has continued to allow parties and festivals and stopped enforcing closing times on shops, reports Al-Araby Al-Jadeed.

This mirrors what was said by a senior Egyptian official at the end of August, that in three weeks the number of infections were set to rise significantly.

The sources are calling for the government to reintroduce preventative measures, including mask wearing as well as fines and possible expulsion for employees who don’t have the vaccine, which the government has said it will implement for civil servants starting in October.

The number of people in public hospitals is dangerous and a real crisis is on the cards if the government does not intervene and make urgent decisions quickly, the sources said.

READ: 45 Egyptians held in notorious Libya detention centre after being rescued at sea

Since the start of the pandemic doctors have spoken out about the dilapidated healthcare system and asked for adequate PPE. They have been harassed and imprisoned if they go against the official narrative of the government, which is to downplay the number of cases.

Several hospital directors have asked for funding for tests to analyse the rate of the spread of the Delta variant in Egypt.

It is likely that the variant is spreading in at least five governorates including Cairo, Giza, Alexandria, Port Said and Damietta.

The news comes ahead of the start of the academic year where teachers and pupils will return to school, which could exacerbate the situation.

The coronavirus situation in Egypt has been bad for some time, with Egypt’s Ministry of Health announcing in May that cases had spiralled out of control in Sohag Governorate.

Doctors told stories of how they had to turn patients away as hospitals were full. In one day, 14 people died and over three days, five doctors in their thirties died from the virus.

At this time, it was midway through Ramadan and sohour tents, concerts and markets continued as normal.

The Centre for Disease Control and Prevention has warned against travelling to Egypt even for people with the vaccine, which is costing Egypt dearly.

In the middle of August the World Travel and Tourism Council announced that the Egyptian economy was losing an estimated $2 million a day due to its inclusion on the UK travel red list.