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Africa Crosses 4 Million COVID-19 Cases Benchmark

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The Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) has reported that COVID-19 cases in Africa on Saturday crossed the four million benchmark with over 4,330,666 cases. 

In its report, the Africa CDC, the African Union specialised healthcare agency placed the pandemic’s death toll at 115,191 and the number of recovered patients at  3,888,495  across the continent. 

The agency also reported South Africa (1,556,242), Morocco (500,984), Tunisia (268,837), Ethiopia and Egypt as being the countries with the most COVID-19 cases in Africa. 

In February 2020, the continent had reported the first case of COVID-19 in Egypt, after which the virus spread like wildfire. 

By July 2020, the continent had crossed the one million benchmark with a large number of cases being recorded in South Africa and Egypt. 

Healthcare System

As at April 2020, there were only 2000 ventilators in the country shared among 41 countries. The UN also reported that the contient required at least 74 million tests kits and 30,000 ventilators. 

The WHO had played a huge role in the set up of COVID-19 labs for COVID-19 testing across the continent. Experts also pointed out that the experience of some African countries in battling Ebola had left them prepared for COVID-19. 

The African Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) played an active role in providing quick emergency response and test distribution across the continent. In the collection of cases data, the ACDC, WHO and the COVID-19 Africa Open Data Projects have collated, and reported the number of cases, recoveries and death across the continent. 

COVID-19 Vaccine 

In the race for COVID-19 vaccination, the WHO provided 3 channels for African countries to receive the vaccine. 

  • Through COVAX agency created by the WHO, Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI).
  • African Union’s African Vaccine Acquisition Task Team
  • Bilateral deals with vaccine manufacturers.

In March 2021, Ghana and Cote D’ivoire became the first countries to begin COVID-19 vaccination in the African continent using COVAX. Ghana had received 600,000 doses while Cote D’ivoire received 504 000 doses of the AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine respectively. 

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