For the first time since the Covid-19 hit, Egyptian health ministry to issue weekly case reports
Egypt's Ministry of Health announced that for the first time since the Covid-19 pandemic hit the country two years ago, it will issue weekly news bulletins rather than daily reports about the number of cases, according to a statement posted on Facebook on Saturday.
The decision was taken to issue weekly reports was taken after the fifth wave's infection rate declined over the past few weeks, the statement added.
"Covid-19's fifth wave, the Omicron variant, and its widespread nature among the population medically created a state of collective immunity," Dr Samir Antar, former director of the Cairo-based public hospital, Imbaba Fevers Hospital, told The New Arab.
"Serious cases requiring admission to hospitals are rare, while most patients need to self-isolate at home just like flu patients," he added.
On 22 December 2021, Egypt announced it had first detected the Omicron variant among Egyptian nationals who returned from abroad at Cairo International Airport. As a result, the highly infectious variant caused a soaring rise in infections, with Egypt reporting about 2,000 infections daily over the past two months.
It was only since the last week of February that the numbers have begun to decline, Egypt's state-run Al-Ahram reported. Since Covid-19 first appeared in Egypt, the health ministry recorded a total of 495,373 infections, including 24,277 deaths and 424,831 recoveries, Al-Ahram added.
But these numbers are believed to be inaccurate, as patients often self-isolate without reporting positive cases to the ministry.
Families who had lost their relatives due to Covid-19 told The New Arab that they believed Egyptian authorities were trying to avoid public panic by not recording the disease as the cause of death in official papers.