Egypt's prime minister reviews measures taken at airports, seaports to confront coronavirus

Ahram Online , Tuesday 3 Mar 2020

Imbaba's health directorate said that five foreigners tested negative for the virus on Tuesday

Medical quarantine workers inspecting passengers at Cairo International Airport (Photo: Egyptian Cabinet)

Egypt's Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly on Tuesday reviewed a report on the recent measures adopted by civil aviation authorities on the new coronavirus, in accordance with the health ministry's and World Health Organization's regulations to monitor arrivals I the country. 

In related news, Imbaba's health directorate said that five foreigners, whose nationalities it did not specify, tested negative for the virus on Tuesday.

The report indicated that a central operations room has been set up to follow-up and monitor passenger traffic around the clock at all airports and to monitor the implementation of the preventive plan to ensure that all precautionary measures are applied to secure all Egyptian airports and to combat the infiltration of the new coronavirus into the country.

The report indicated that all Egyptian airports and the national aviation company have mandated employees in airports and on aircraft to implement quarantine instructions and take the highest level of preventive standards in dealing with passengers.

They have been trained to deal with suspected cases, to conduct medical examinations of passengers, to sterilise aircrafts and airport transportation, to safely dispose of waste, and to distribute informative brochures on dealing with the coronavirus to all workers. 

The prime minister also followed up with Transport Minister Kamel Al-Wazir on the recent precautionary measures in place at land and sea ports.

The minister highlighted precautionary measures at Alexandria, which recently received a Maltese cruise ship coming from Greece with 629 tourists of different nationalities on board, in addition to a crew of 400 individuals.

A team from the quarantine department checked tourists and crew on board the ship before they arrived at the tourist passenger terminal at Alexandria port. They were tested with remote thermometers and no suspected cases were reported. The tourists were accommodated safely after receiving the quarantine department’s permit.

Egypt has raised the alert level for the novel coronavirus at all airports, the country's civil aviation ministry said in a statement on Monday, adding that all precautions necessary to confront the outbreak and limit its spread have been taken.

In accordance with the precautionary plan set up by the government, a compulsory medical examination will be performed on all passengers coming to Egypt from the countries affected by the virus through the quarantine offices, in coordination with the health ministry and all concerned agencies, the statement added. 

On Monday, Egypt announced its second confirmed coronavirus case, a Canadian employee who works for an oil company in the country. The patient has been isolated in a hospital to receive the necessary medical care.

The epidemic has killed over 3,000 people worldwide, with the vast majority in mainland China. It has infected 90,000 globally according to the World Health Organization.

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