Egypt’s Health Ministry on Sunday confirmed 850 new coronavirus cases, up from 841 on Saturday. The ministry also reported 44 deaths and 765 recovered cases.
The country has now reported a total of 216,334 confirmed cases, 12,738 deaths, and 163,479 recovered cases.
Case numbers began creeping up in March, and Egyptian officials have speculated that a third wave of the virus will hit during or after the month of Ramadan, which began on April 13.
Doctors and officials have warned the public to abide by coronavirus precautionary measures during the holy month, stating that social distancing is just as important as wearing a mask.
Meanwhile, the virus continues to wreak havoc on business and tourism, with Alexandria reporting a meager 15 percent hotel occupancy rate. Additionally, 15 percent of the city’s restaurants have closed as a result of the pandemic.
Egypt’s vaccination campaign that began in January is still working to vaccinate medical staff, people over the age of 65, and those with chronic illnesses, but registration for the vaccine is open to all.
The vaccine should cost no more than LE200 per person, Health Minister Hala Zayed announced, with low-income folks eligible to get their doses for free.
Egypt is currently using China’s Sinopharm vaccine and the UK’s AstraOxford vaccine. So far, 100 million doses have been secured by the ministry through the COVAX initiative, which is enough to vaccinate roughly half of Egypt’s population.
IMAGE: A woman wearing a protective face mask walks down Al Khayamia street in old Cairo, Egypt April 16, 2020. (Reuters)