(FILES) In this file photo taken on March 8, 2020, Egyptians bound for GCC countries gather in front of the Central Public Health Laboratories in downtown Cairo as they wait to get tested for COVID-19 coronavirus disease. - Four months after Egypt reported its first coronavirus case, experts say the health system is approaching a "critical threshold" in its capacity to tackle the disease. The Arab world's most populous country of 100 million inhabitants has so far declared JUST OVER 12,000 coronavirus cases and 600 fatalities from the COVID-19 respiratory disease. (Photo: AFP)
Egypt’s Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly said on Thursday that medical staff working in hospitals nationwide underwent some 8,900 coronavirus PCR tests and 20,000 rapid tests.
The prime minister made the statement during a meeting with Health Minister Hala Zayed, State Minister of Information Osama Heikal, Minister of Higher Education Khaled Abdel-Ghaffar, Presidential Health Adviser Awad Tag El-Din, and General Bahaa El-Din Zidan, the chairman of the New Egyptian Drug Authority and the Procurement of Medical Supplies and Technology.
During the meeting, Madbouly asserted the government’s total appreciation and support of the medical teams battling against the coronavirus.
He discussed with the officials the latest developments concerning the decision to add 320 centralised and general hospitals affiliated to the Ministry of Health and 10 university hospitals, working under the Ministry of Higher Education, to the list of hospitals screening coronavirus patients.
The meeting saw discussions on the new doctors' assigning system announced by the Health ministry after heated debate with doctors.
Following the meeting , a batch of government decisions were announced, including an increase in the coronavirus hotline call centre capacity with additional 105 lines added to answer the calls and inquiries of the citizens as well as assigning assistant professors and assistants in medical schools in universities to work in university hospitals.
Earlier on Thursday, Madbouly held a meeting with the head of the Egyptian Medical Syndicate Dr Hassen Khairy to discuss recent developments concerning the pandemic and doctors' conditions during the crisis.
The syndicate has been demanding increasing PCR tests and not relying on rapid tests alone.