Egypt’s health minister gets Chinese coronavirus trial vaccine
London, Sep. 29, 2020 (AltAfrica)-Egyptian Health Minister Hala Zayed was injected on Monday with a Chinese-made coronavirus vaccine, the phase 3 clinical trials for which are currently taking place in Egypt in tandem with 100 other countries.
The minister had the vaccine injected in the deltoid muscle in her upper arm at the Egyptian Holding Company for Biopharmaceuticals and Vaccines (Vacsera), according to a statement by the ministry’s spokesman Khaled Megahed.
The vaccine trial is being carried out in Egypt in cooperation with the Chinese government and the UAE’s G42 Healthcare.
In July, Egypt was selected by China to serve as a future African hub for manufacturing a coronavirus vaccine if one is developed by Beijing.
The trial vaccine has been administered to 40,000 volunteers around the world, none of whom have displayed adverse side effects. Some 45,000 more volunteers are set to take the vaccine.
Some 6,000 people in Egypt are among the participants in phase 3, which is deemed the final stage in the trial to test the efficacy and safety of the vaccine before it is licensed, the statement said.
The Egyptian health minister has called on Egyptians to take part in the trials “for the sake of humanity.”
According to a previous statement by the health ministry, volunteers receive two injections, 21 days apart, and will be monitored over the year.
They also will take a PCR test to make sure they have not previously been infected with the virus.
Egypt reported 115 new coronavirus cases on Monday, bringing the total infection tally to 102,955 since the outbreak began in February.
The health ministry also reported 18 new deaths, bringing the total number of deaths from the virus to 5,901.
The statement said that 506 patients have been discharged after recovering from the virus, bringing the total number of recoveries to 95,586.