Omicron currently the dominant COVID strain in Egypt: Health official

Ahram Online , Saturday 11 Feb 2023

The dominant strain of coronavirus currently in Egypt is the Omicron variant, which exhibits milder symptoms despite being more infectious, head of the Health and Population Ministry's Preventive Medicine Sector Amr Kandil said on Saturday.

A man receives a dose of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine at one of the youth centres wher
A man receives a dose of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine at one of the youth centres where citizens can get the vaccines without prior registration, in an effort to boost the country s vaccination drive, in Cairo, Egypt, September 27, 2021. REUTERS


In a press conference on Saturday, Kandil revealed that the Omicron mutations that have been detected in Egypt are BA2 at 47 percent, BA5 at 43 percent, BA4 at 8 percent, and BA1 at 3 percent.

Kandil added that the Omicron variant is the most prevalent respiratory virus worldwide, accounting for 29.9 percent of all cases, and that respiratory viruses usually spread between October to March, and most intensely between December to February.

The health official also said that 100.9 million doses of coronavirus vaccines have been administered nationwide since the start of vaccination campaign in 2021.

Kandil added that over 1.8 million people have been given their jabs in door-knocking campaigns carried out by the ministry since February 2022 in five governorates: Menoufiya, Qalioubiya, Minya, Assiut and Qena.

Concerning vaccinations in general, Kandil said that the state administers 55 million vaccine doses for free each year at a cost of EGP 1.8 billion. Vaccines administered for travel purposes account for less than 1 percent of this number, he added.

Every year, up to 37 million immunisations are given to children under 1.5 years old, 12 million to school-age children, and 6 million to travellers, Kandil said.

Almost 99 percent of vaccinations for residents and their children are administered at official health clinics, he added.

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