Minister of Health Hala Zayed at Abu Khalifa Hospital in Ismailia, on 24 January 2021 (Snapshot ministry released video)
Doctor Hossam Hosny, the head of the Scientific Committee to Combat Coronavirus at the Ministry of Health, said on Tuesday that that there have been virtually no reports of any serious side-effects from the Chinese vaccine used in Egypt.
During a phone-in to a popular late-night talk show on ON TV, Hosny said the Chinese Sinopharm vaccine currently used in Egypt is "safe and effective in the short and long terms."
Hosny stated that the safety rate of the vaccine currently used in Egypt is approximately 99 percent and the efficacy rate is approximately 86 percent.
The Sinopharm coronavirus vaccine is administered in two doses 21 days apart.
All studies show that the patient develops enough immunity against the coronavirus after approximately one week from the day they receive the second dose, Hosny said.
Hossam urged those who are reluctant to take the vaccination to reconsider, stressing that the vaccine is the only hope of ending the pandemic.
"Whoever wants their life to go back to normal should take the vaccine," he said.
Egypt has already started the vaccination process this week using the Chinese vaccine, beginning with medical teams nationwide.
The country has registered 162,486 cases of coronavirus so far, including 127,001 recoveries and 9,012 fatalities, according to the health ministry.
Egypt received its first batch of the Chinese vaccine, comprising 50,000 doses, from the China National Pharmaceutical Group Sinopharm last December.
The health ministry approved the Chinese vaccine in early January.
The country is currently waiting for new batches of coronavirus vaccines in order to expand access to vaccinations, especially among high-priority groups.
Egypt's vaccination priority list starts with frontline healthcare workers at the isolation, fever, chest and screening hospitals; followed by kidney failure and cancer patients and then the elderly.
Egypt has reserved 100 million doses of other approved vaccines and has the capability to store 140 million doses.