Egypt’s health ministry said in a statement that it detected 509 new coronavirus cases on Saturday, bringing the total infections toll nationwide since the outbreak of the pandemic last year to 169,106.
The health ministry also reported 44 deaths, bringing the total fatalities from the virus to 9,604.
Health Ministry Spokesperson Khaled Megahed said in the statement that 422 patients have been discharged from hospitals after recovering from the virus in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of recoveries to 132,054.
Earlier on Saturday, Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi welcomed an invitation for Egypt to join the African Vaccine Acquisition Task Team (AVATT) during the 34th Ordinary Session of the African Union (AU) Assembly, which is held online for the first time over coronavirus concerns.
The AU’s AVATT started the operation last month. It was established by South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa, the chairperson of AU in 2020, to serve as a component of the Africa vaccine strategy.
President El-Sisi affirmed Egypt’s keenness to carry out its responsibilities with the aim of securing the coronavirus vaccine for the African countries.
Egypt initiated its COVID-19 vaccination roll-out in January, with priority to the country’s medical staff who are on the frontline battling the outbreak.
It received in late-January 50,000 doses as a first batch of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine from the British-Swedish company’s branch in India a month after nearly a month of another first batch from China’s Sinopharm vaccine that compromised the same amount.