Covid-19 surge: Africa losing battle to brutal third wave

The current Covid-19 surge in Africa is proving to be the most brutal in the continent, warn the World Health Organisation’s Regional Office for Africa and the Africa CDC, even as the vaccine supply crunch persists.

Director of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) John Nkengasong said last week on Thursday that Africa was losing the battle against the coronavirus and expressed concern that the virus might gain what he called “endemicity” in parts of the continent.

Africa is facing a fast-surging third wave of Covid-19 pandemic, according to WHO with cases spreading more rapidly and projected to soon overtake the peak of the second wave the continent witnessed at the start of the year.

“Timely access to vaccines to vaccinate at scale and with speed is crucial if we’re to win this battle,” said Dr Nkengasong.

This comes even as it became apparent that the WHO-backed Covax was headed for an overhaul over its failure to deliver on its mandate to procure vaccines for the continent.

Dr Nkengasong warned that without expeditious access to vaccines the virus will spread to rural areas, where it is extremely difficult to mop up, “because that will become the beginning of the endemicity of the pandemic and we will then move from a pandemic to thinking of how to manage it in terms of an endemic disease as with malaria, HIV and others.”

Source: By PAULINE KAIRU The Eastafrican

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