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Health Minister announces correct figures of dead and injured

Georgette Sadeq

29 Jul 2013 6:50 pm

in street violence in Egypt

The wildly deviating figures of the dead and injured in the street violence in Egypt all through last week have left everyone lost as to where the truth lay. It was therefore a good step by the new Health Minister Maha al-Rabbat to hold a press conference to explain the discrepancies and declare the correct figures. The conference was held at the ministry offices in Cairo on Sunday evening

The wildly deviating figures of the dead and injured in the street violence in Egypt all through last week have left everyone lost as to where the truth lay. It was therefore a good step by the new Health Minister Maha al-Rabbat to hold a press conference to explain the discrepancies and declare the correct figures. The conference was held at the ministry offices in Cairo on Sunday evening.
Rabbat said the violence that took place last weekend left 299 injured and 80 dead; 39 of whom died in the vicinity of the east Cairo mosque of Rabaa al-Adawiya where the Mursi supporters are encamped. 
The violence in Alexandria left eight dead and 194 injured; and in Port Said one dead and 27 injured.
These figures, Rabbat said, were derived from the hospital registers where the victims had been moved. When asked about why the discrepancy in the figures reported by the media, the Health Minister said the ministry figures were highly precise, but the discrepancy may occur owing to the fact that some cases are moved to smaller private hospitals which do not report the figures to the ministry for fear that the patient may be wanted by the police. “This was especially true in case of victims at Rabaa mosque,” she said.
Rabbat confirmed that the Health Ministry was on high alert since the eve of 30 June. A crisis management committee was in perpetual convention since then; 
more than 1,900 ambulance vehicles were on full alert to move whenever required, with the possibility of increasing their numbers if needs be; and field hospitals were set up to offer first and emergency aid on site.  All State hospitals and teaching hospitals were placed on high alert, and rapid deployment medical squads were on hand to rush to places where they might be needed; they were indeed called for in North Sinai and in the east Delta town of Mansoura. 
In a word by the head of the crisis management committee,  Khaled al-Khateeb, head of the Central Department for Critical and Emergency Care, he explained that the role of the Health Ministry was to offer services to anyone who needed them, no matter which faction he or she belonged to.  “We were contacted by the field hospital at Rabaa mosque where the pro-Mursi supporters were centred, asking for supplies of medicines and for doctors and surgeons of various specialities. We answered their request on the spot.” He also confirmed that the ministry ensured an ample supply of blood in the various locations.
Watani International
29 July 2013 


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