CAIRO: The number of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases in Egypt has jumped in the first week of May, rising from about 300 cases on the first day of the month to 495 recorded on May 8. Egypt has so far recorded 8,476 cases and 503 deaths.
Dr. Amgad El-Haddad, the head of the Allergy and Immunology Department at the Egyptian Institute for Vaccine and Serum (VACSERA), said that the rising number of infections is due to the “reckless behavior of people” regarding protective measures against the pandemic. He said this was the direct result of “the people’s lack of awareness, especially concerning gatherings and crowded places that we saw before Ramadan.”
“There are two challenges in the upcoming period: The first is Eid Al-Fitr holidays when people are expected to go out in large numbers to markets for shopping,” Dr. El-Haddad said. “The second challenge will come on June 1 which marks the implementation of the government’s decision to coexist with the coronavirus.”
Egypt is near the peak of the virus infection, according to Dr. Hossam Hosny, head of the Anti-Coronavirus Scientific Committee at the Ministry of Health. Hosny said the reason behind the recent surge in infections was due to the fact that people were violating the curfew restrictions.
“We have actually reached the beginning of the peak and we hope to further, cooperate with the people to reach a level of stability, after which the decline phase would begin soon,” he said.
Egypt is near the peak of the virus infection
Dr. Hossam Honsy, Health Ministry
“I don’t blame the people for the surging numbers but still, we need strict penalties if the curfew is violated.”
Ministry of Health spokesman Khaled Megahed stressed the need to adhere to social distancing, minimize socializing, and commit to preventive measures, in addition to drinking more fluids from iftar (breaking fast) to sahoor (last meal before dawn), and following a healthy diet to boost the immune system.
Megahed called on the public to change some of their habits such as excessive shopping and gatherings, and to leave home only when necessary. He said people should follow all precautionary measures by wearing face masks and constantly washing hands or spraying them with alcohol to avoid infections, especially during the last two weeks of Ramadan and before Eid Al-Fitr.
Megahed called on those who show coronavirus symptoms to go immediately to the nearest cardio-thoracic or fever hospital to receive the necessary medical treatment.