By Mostafa Fahmy and Ahmed Saad
Quarantine Director at Cairo International Airport Imad Al-Hashimi announced the introduction of precautionary measures to combat the Ebola virus, especially for travellers visiting from the countries of Central and West Africa.
Al-Hashimi said the initial symptoms of the disease are similar to the flu, which are then followed by severe fatigue, fever, headache and low blood pressure.
He added that quarantine screens passengers travelling from affected countries for the disease during a period that ranges between 1-21 days.
This comes as the World Health Organization has assessed that Egypt is safe from the virus, which is rampant in West and Central Africa.
Official spokesperson for the World Health Organization in Egypt Baha Elkoussy said that the Ebola virus does not represent a threat to Egypt and Arab countries and differs completely from the Coronavirus, which has spread across Saudi Arabia and affected large numbers in neighbouring countries. He stressed that the World Health Organization did not mention Egypt in any advisories so far and currently classifies the nation as safe.
“Egypt is required to take all possible precautionary measures toward travellers from Africa, especially those from Guinea, Sierra Leonne, Nigeria and Liberia in order to prevent the virus from entering the country,” Alkoussy said.
“Ebola represents a complex situation, because it affects more than one African country and is characterised by continuous population migration of citizens of these countries. This makes the work of health organisations attempting to control the deadly virus difficult,” he added.
“The World Health Organization has not recommended banning trade and travel with the affected countries and the organisation continues to research the virus, its spread, and how to combat it,” Alkoussy stated.
Dr Amro Qandil, head of the Ministry of Health’s Prevention Sector, ruled out the arrival of Ebola to Egypt. He pointed out that the ministry is monitoring the virus’ spread and many take preventive measures to counter it.
Qandil mentioned that the Ministry of Health sent letters to all hospitals to inform doctors about Ebola and appropriate treatment in the case that are detected.
A senior source at the Ministry of Civil Aviation told Al-Borsa that EgyptAir flights to Africa have not been impacted because of the virus due to the lack of direct lines from Cairo International Airport and the countries affected by Ebola.
He pointed out that flights carrying Umrah pilgrims from Conakry, Guinea to Jeddah may be affected, although a final decision regarding these flights has not yet been taken.
Translated from Al-Borsa newspaper