By: Uche Ezeadigwe
World Health Organisation is more concerned over the exponential growth of coronavirus cases in most countries in Africa.
Reports from WHO shows that Coronavirus Cases has topped at 10,000 deaths against the 500 earlier reported in Africa.
The virus was slow to spread across the continent initially, but the number of cases has grown exponentially in recent weeks.The World Health Organization called the situation on the continent as “very concerning.”
There are more than 10,420 cases in Africa and at least 517 people have died, according to WHO data.
Recently, four countries have cases that top 1,000. South Africa has the most cases at more than 1,740, but Algeria has seen the most deaths. About a dozen people have died in South Africa and nearly 200 have died in Algeria, which has approximately 1,460 cases. Egypt is another hard-hit country, with more than 1,320 cases and about 85 deaths. Morocco has nearly 1,150 cases with 83 deaths.
According to WHO press release, the virus was slow to reach Africa as the pandemic slowly crept across the globe with number of cases grown exponentially in recent weeks and continues to spread
Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, WHO’s regional director for Africa, said COVID-19 has the potential to devastate the country socially and economically.
“COVID-19 has the potential not only to cause thousands of deaths, but to also unleash economic and social devastation,” Moeti said
The health organization assures they are working with governments across Africa to increase treatment capacities in “critical response areas, such as coordination, surveillance, testing, isolation, case management, contact tracing, infection prevention and control, risk communication and community engagement and laboratory capacity, he added”.
Ghana, Kenya, Ethiopia, Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia and Nigeria have expanded national testing to multiple labs, allowing for decentralized testing.
However, Dr. Ahmed Al-Mandhari, WHO’s regional director for the Eastern Mediterranean, said African countries “must accelerate and scale up comprehensive response,” including enforcing social distancing rules.