Egypt reports no serious side effects on Chinese COVID-19 vaccine
Updated 22:37, 21-Dec-2020

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

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

The country's Ministry of Health and Population announced on Friday that Egypt would receive more shipments of the Chinese COVID-19 vaccine Sinopharm through the United Arab Emirates (UAE) later this week.

Egypt has received the second batch of 50,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines developed by Chinese company Sinopharm, local media Egypt Today reported.

That brings the country's total inventory to 100,000 doses and is enough to have 50,000 people vaccinated. Each individual will need two doses of the vaccine with an interval of 21 days in between.

Their Health Ministry's spokesperson Khaled Megahid said that they've discussed the possibility of transferring Sinopharm's technological expertise in drug production to Egypt.

Megahid added their domestic vaccine factories are qualified to manufacture vaccines, and there is a complete review process for production lines regarding vaccines.

Egypt received its first shipment of vaccines on December 10. The shipment arrived at Cairo airport from the UAE, which has been carrying out phase III clinical trials of the vaccine.

The UAE Health Ministry said last week that the Sinopharm vaccine had 86 percent efficacy, citing an interim analysis of the late-stage clinical trials.

"Over the one million doses administered to the high-risk groups, no serious adverse effects have been reported so far," Zheng Zhongwei, the National Health Commission official heading China's COVID-19 vaccine development team, also told a press briefing Saturday.

The vaccine will be free of charge in Egypt, and the government will prioritize vaccinating medical staff and people with chronic diseases, health officials said.

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