Healthcare systems across Africa are “far from ready” to cope with a fresh surge of coronavirus infections, with vaccine deliveries at a near standstill and cases surging in many countries, the World Health Organization (WHO) has warned.
“Many African hospitals and clinics are still far from ready to cope with a huge rise in critically ill patients,” WHO regional director for Africa, Matshidiso Moeti, said on Thursday.
Africa has officially registered more than 4.8 million cases and 130,000 deaths, according to the WHO, representing 2.9 percent of global cases and 3.7 percent of deaths.
According to a survey conducted by the WHO in May, the essential health facilities and personnel required to manage critically ill COVID-19 patients are grossly inadequate in many African countries.
Of 23 countries surveyed, most had less than one intensive care unit bed per 100,000 population and only one-third had mechanical ventilators. In comparison, countries like Germany and the United States have more than 25 beds per 100,000 people.
“Treatment is the last line of defence against this virus and we cannot let it be breached,” Moeti stressed, calling for better equipment for hospitals and medical staff.
In recent weeks, the continent has seen a rise in infections. South Africa, officially the most affected African country, has tightened health restrictions and now has more than 1.6 million cases and 56,439 deaths.
In the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Kinshasa, the WHO detected an “exponential rise” last month in cases that mirrored a “clear deterioration” in the wider province.
The DRC Health Minister Jean-Jacques Mbungani said that the country was experiencing a new wave of infections.
“I officially announce the onset of the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in our country, with Kinshasa as its epicentre,” Mbungani told reporters.
A low vaccination rate and haphazard observance of recommended hygiene practices were among the reasons for the rising infection rate, he said….
Modern Approaches to Augmentation of Brain Function Available from Springer Press This book covers recent advances in neural technology that provide for enhancements for brain function. It addresses a broad range of neural phenomena [...]
Although the currently available COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective, limited manufacturing capacity and the need for cold-chain storage hinder their global distribution. A recent study tested the efficacy of a new adeno-associated virus (AAV) [...]
Fully vaccinated people were 11 times less likely to die of COVID and 10 times less likely to be hospitalized compared to the unvaccinated since highly contagious Delta became the most common variant, US [...]
The highly-infectious Delta coronavirus variant has spread to at least 174 countries worldwide, from the US to Australia, causing a surge in COVID-19 cases. The variant has mutations that help it partially escape the immune response produced by [...]
Fragile mRNA molecules used in COVID-19 vaccines can’t get into cells on their own. They owe their success to lipid nanoparticles that took decades to refine. Messenger RNA (mRNA) is having a moment. This [...]
The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed critical knowledge gaps and assumptions concerning how respiratory viruses spread between hosts. Traditionally thought to be spread mainly through large respiratory droplets produced by the coughs and sneezes of sick individuals, [...]
SARS-CoV-2 is just one of nonillions of viruses on our planet, and scientists are rapidly identifying legions of new species. Mya Breitbart has hunted novel viruses in African termite mounds, Antarctic seals and water [...]
As a team of South African researchers we have identified a new lineage of SARS-CoV-2, the virus causing COVID-19. A lineage represents a genetically distinct virus population with a common ancestor. This virus may be designated as a variant [...]
Citing the possibility of another serious pandemic, the Biden administration on Friday laid out a plan to transform the nation’s ability to respond to major biological threats. As staggering as the COVID-19 pandemic has been, [...]
How doctors can predict which patients are more likely to die of COVID Several studies have come out about the COVID prognosis. As a result, we now have a powerful way to predict [...]
Though Delta continues to be the dominant COVID-19 strain, the World Health Organization (WHO) now says there's a new variant to keep your eye on. The B.1.621 variant, also called Mu, has just been [...]
Being fully vaccinated against Covid-19 not only cuts the risk of catching it, but also of an infection turning into long Covid, research led by King's College London suggests. It shows that in the [...]
Moderna Inc.’s Covid vaccine generated more than double the antibodies of a similar shot made by Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE in research directly comparing immune responses to the inoculations. A study of almost [...]
A coronavirus variant first detected in South Africa 'could be more infectious' than other mutations and have the potential to 'evade vaccines', scientists have said. The C.1.2 strain, which is linked to 'increased transmissibility', is more mutations away from [...]