No serious side effects from China’s Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine: Egyptian official

The Assistant Egyptian Health Minister for Research Affairs Noha Assem assured on Sunday that the roughly 3,000 volunteers for clinical trials to test the Chinese Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine have shown no serious side effects.

Assem’s statements came on the sidelines of a webinar for the scientific committee to combat the coronavirus held by the Ministry of Health and Population at the headquarters of the Princess Fatma Academy medical university.

All reported side effects have been minor and included a fever, redness around the vaccination area and cough, she said, all of which disappeared within a few days.

Assem added that the Egyptian Drug Authority obtained about 55 samples of the Chinese coronavirus vaccine to study and ensure its safety and effectiveness.

The Ministry of Health and Population announced on Friday that Egypt will receive more shipments of the Chinese COVID-19 vaccine Sinopharm through the UAE later this week.

On December 10, the country received its first shipment of a coronavirus vaccine from the Chinese company Sinopharm, which is said to be 86 percent effective. The vaccine will be free for Egyptians, with the first doses being reserved for healthcare workers and at-risk populations.

Egypt’s Health and Population Minister Hala Zayed said on December 12 that a website for anyone eager to take the Chinese vaccine for COVID-19 has been completed and will launch in the coming days.

The vaccine will initially be given to medical staff working in isolation and fever hospitals, and will also prioritize elderly citizens with chronic health diseases residing in care homes. Zayed added that it will also be given to people who suffer from severe chronic diseases such as kidney failure, and patients with cancer.

Egypt’s Health Ministry on Sunday confirmed 611 new coronavirus cases, bringing the country’s total number up to 124,891, Ministry spokesperson Khaled Megahed announced.

The ministry announced 28 deaths on Sunday, raising the country’s total COVID-19-related deaths to 7,069.

And 324 patients were discharged from quarantine at isolation hospitals, raising Egypt’s fully-recovered cases up to 106,481.

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