A file photo of MP Mohamed Abdel-Alleem Dawoud (Photo: Al-Ahram)
Mohamed Abdel-Alleem Dawoud, an MP representing the opposition Wafd Party, has demanded the Egyptian House of Representatives hold an urgent session to discuss the repercussions of the coronavirus pandemic in Egypt.
"The government is not moving as it should, and the doctors are attacked [in hospitals] because the government is isolated from what is happening in the hospitals,” Dawoud said during the second session of the newly elected legislative body on Wednesday.
Dawoud claimed that there is a shortage in medical oxygen supplies and medications in a number of hospitals, adding "the situation is so dangerous at all hospitals nationwide."
"The matter will be discussed," House Speaker Hanafy El-Gebaly replied.
The oxygen challenges have also surfaced domestically, since patients reportedly died in two public hospitals earlier this month due to the lack of oxygen, a matter that the health ministry later denied in an official statement, while the public prosecutor is still investigating the matter.
Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly demanded on Saturday that the government double the production of medical oxygen to fulfil public and private hospitals' needs to face the pandemic’s second wave.
Meanwhile, Minister of Health Hala Zayed stressed on Monday that the shortage in oxygen supplies is not a challenge only for Egypt but also for all the countries dealing with the pandemic.
However, she assured the public of the availability of oxygen tanks, noting that oxygen supply at all hospitals has increased by 50 percent after doubling the production rate at a number of factories producing medical oxygen, and also doubling the number of oxygen transport vehicles to meet hospital needs.
The minister attributed problems in transportation of oxygen tanks to hospitals to delays caused by recent foggy weather conditions in Egypt, which, she added, led to the suspension of transportation operations from 8 hours to 12 hours on some days.
The current spike in coronavirus infections and death tallies comes after almost five months of reporting lower daily infections and death tolls.
However, less than 1,000 new cases have been reported over the past four days.
Egypt has had a total of 151,723 cases officially, including 119,635 recoveries and 8,304 fatalities, since the outbreak started in February 2020.