Mass doctors’ resignations after the death of a young doctor from COVID-19

Doctors at Al-Mounira General Hospital have announced their mass resignation from the Egyptian Ministry of Health after the death of Doctor Waleed Yehia, resident of gynecology and obstetrics in the same hospital, of COVID-19 after he was left for days deprived of a test and intensive care. The doctors reasoned their mass resignation by “the reluctance of the ministry to conduct tests and treat [doctors] which has led to the death of 18 doctors till now, and the death of other health care workers, the latest of them Waleed Yehia.” The resignation also focused on the continuous threats of detention, administrative punishment and dismissal if doctors complained about the ministry and the government’s treatment of the crisis.

Waleed Yehia, 32, died last Sunday, the same day three other doctors died. Waleed’s death sparked popular anger on social media, where users, including doctors, compared the maltreatment of Waleed and other doctors with the special treatment that Ragaa al-Geddawy, an Egyptian actress, received after being infected with COVID-19.

In the case of al-Geddawy, the Health Minister Hala Zayed contacted al-Geddawy and followed up on the case personally. Al-Geddawy was transferred to a VIP ICU room, although her case was mild, and all actors and actresses who worked with her were offered rt-PCR tests at the same time as the ministry refused tests for doctors treating COVID-19 cases.