The Egyptian Doctors’ Syndicate called for the prompt testing of medical staff dealing with suspected coronavirus cases after at least 17 doctors and nurses had tested positive for the disease at the country’s main cancer hospital.
In a statement on Saturday, the Doctors’ Syndicate called for an immediate protocol to test doctors and nurses dealing with suspected cases without the need to wait for symptoms.
The syndicate voiced out other demands, including providing preventive kits for the medical staff at all health institutions nationwide and limiting crowds at hospitals through suspending examinations of non-urgent medical interventions.
It also called for designating a hospital in every governorate or a department at every hospital to isolate and test suspected coronavirus cases among the medical staff until the results are carried out.
The demands come one day after at least 17 doctors and nurses at Egypt’s National Cancer Institute (NCI) tested positive for the coronavirus, raising concerns about the readiness of health facilities in the country to combat the pandemic.
Cairo University, which manages the country’s main cancer hospital, said it will open an investigation into the new cases to find evidence of negligence and punish those responsible.
Mahmoud Alam El-Din, the Cairo University spokesman, said the university has decided to restrict outpatient clinics to emergency cases after closing the NCI for only one day on Saturday as part of the preventive measures adopted to stem the spread of the disease.
Egypt reported on Friday its highest daily increase in coronavirus cases and deaths with 120 new cases and eight fatalities, bringing it closer to 1,000 infections as authorities warn of a more rapid spread of the pandemic.
Until Friday, the total number of cases stood at 985 and deaths at 66.