Egypt’s Minister of Health Hala Zayed has met with Ahmed Al-Mandhari, the World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean region, for discussions on a range of topics.

During the meeting, the two sides discussed the strengthening of preventive measures against diseases that are targeted by vaccination campaigns.

Also present at the meeting, on Sunday evening, were WHO representative in Egypt Naima Al-Qusayr, Adviser to the Egyptian President for Health Issues Mohamed Awad Tag El-Din, and officials from Egypt’s Ministry of Health. 

The meeting coincides with the news that some diseases targeted in vaccination campaigns have started emerging in countries neighbouring Egypt, Ministry of Health Spokesperson Khaled Mogahed said in a statement on Monday.

Zayed noted Egypt’s readiness to support brotherly countries and transfer its expertise in the field of vaccinations and surveillance.

During the meeting, the minister stressed the importance of cooperation with the WHO on the recommendations and technical expertise needed to keep Egypt free from Poliomyelitis. This will take place through a strengthening of the compulsory vaccination system and the environmental surveillance system. 

The WHO is starting a regional strategy to combat Poliomyelitis in cooperation with Egypt. 

Mogahed said that Egypt was the first country to start an environmental surveillance system, support preventive decision-making at the national level, and continue national programmes and campaigns for polio vaccination.

Zayed called on the WHO’s regional and Egypt offices to cooperate with the Ministry of Health on preparing a technical report with recommendations and guidance necessary to maintain the strength of Egypt’s vaccination and surveillance systems.

For his part, Al-Mandhari hailed Egypt’s efforts in developing the health system. He also praised Egypt’s step making vaccination against Poliomyelitis accessible for all those residents in the country, whether they are citizens or not. 

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