Egypt’s health authorities say a local pharmacy will open in Cairo’s Cairenes Square on Tuesday for the first time in more than four years.
The pharmacy will offer pharmacy services for the cost of just 25 Egyptian pounds ($3.50), a spokeswoman for the ministry of health told Al Jazeera on Monday.
The service is being offered by a private company, the spokesperson said, but the government did not name the pharmacy.
Al Jazeera’s Paul Taggart, reporting from Cairo, said the government’s plan is to allow private pharmacies in some parts of the country.
Al-Azhar University professor Abdul-Hadi al-Rajab said that the plan is part of an effort to reduce the number of people dying in hospitals and clinics due to infection, but it could also be part of a broader strategy to curb the spread of the virus.
He said he expected the government would have to allow up to a quarter of the pharmacies in the country to be open, with the rest set up on private land.
The ministry of the interior said the pharmacy would operate on a pilot basis, and the government will announce its plan for further expansions.
A doctor is seen on a stretcher in the Egyptian town of Khartoum, Egypt, March 18, 2020.Reuters