Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

Egyptian Doctors Call for Full Lockdown

Egyptian Doctors Call for Full Lockdown

Monday, 11 May, 2020 - 10:00
A woman wearing a protective health mask has her body temperature measured (File photo: AFP)

A number of Egyptian doctors urged the authorities to impose a two-week lockdown across the country to curb the spread of the COVID-19 disease amid a surge in cases.

Head of the Egyptian Medical Syndicate (EMS) Dr. Hussein Khairy and the chief of Cairo’s Medical Syndicate, Sherine Ghaleb, sent a letter to the government to propose a full lockdown.

In the letter, the doctors stressed the need for a comprehensive curfew during the rest of Ramadan.

They admitted that the measure may be harsh, but it would hopefully lead to slowing spread of the virus.

Khairy said: “We have found that people have not taken the fatal disease seriously.”

The doctors explained that a full lockdown would deal a swift, significant blow to the virus, adding that if no action is taken to curb the pandemic, there will be a massive surge in cases.

The government did not comment on the letter, and the doctors said they have not yet received an official response.

Egypt has seen a surge in COVID-19 infections over the past two days. On Saturday, the Health Ministry announced 488 new infections and 11 new deaths.

In related news, the Medical Syndicate announced the death of the assistant director for preventive medicine, Dr. Ahmed Ezzat Deraz, after contracting the coronavirus, making him the country's ninth physician to die from the novel disease.

The Syndicate mourned Deraz saying he died while performing his duties despite his old age and having chronic diseases.

Meanwhile, the Egyptian Cabinet Information and Decision Support Center (IDSC) reported that the national mortality rate dropped despite the coronavirus pandemic.

The Center announced that in April, 42,144 deaths were recorded, compared to 43,303 in April 2019 and 43,399 in April 2018.

The pandemic did not affect the national death rate which dropped 2.8 percent in April, according to the IDSC.

The IDSC stressed that the coronavirus death rate in Egypt is still “within safe limits compared to countries around the world”.

Editor Picks