CDC warns of danger of “devastating” second wave in Africa


The director of the African Center for Disease Control and Prevention of the African Union (Africa CDC) warned that if countries and people slow down measures against covid-19 there will be a second wave with “devastating consequences”.

“I strongly appeal to the continent not to let their guard down because the consequences would be devastating,” warned John Nkengasong, during the weekly press conference on the evolution of the pandemic on the African continent.

Since the first continental infection was detected on February 14 in Egypt, the region has accumulated just over 1.6 million cases (4.2% of the world total), more than 39,000 deaths (3.6% of the world total) ) and 1.3 million people recovered, according to the latest data released today by CDC Africa, an agency operating within the framework of the African Union (AU).

Five countries are responsible for 69% of infections reported on the continent, with emphasis on South Africa, which concentrates 43% of cases, equivalent to almost 700 thousand people, in a list that also includes Morocco, Egypt, Ethiopia and Nigeria.

After the peak recorded in July, the evolution of the pandemic slowed down, but in the last four weeks the pace of contagions has accelerated, with an average increase of 7% in new infections, according to the Cameroonian virologist, who also highlighted the “average increase in 8% in the number of new deaths per week “during that period.

“We have reached a critical point in our response” to the coronavirus crisis; we have already seen huge reductions in the number of cases, but now we are seeing increases “, warned Nkengasong.

The Africa CDC director warned that the continent cannot afford to slow down containment measures and warned that fatigue must be combated.

“We cannot allow ourselves a second wave on the continent due to fatigue, our economies would not survive”, concluded the official.

In the last 24 hours, Africa recorded an additional 254 deaths due to covid-19, for a total of 39,122, with 1,603,982 infected, plus 11,433, according to the latest pandemic data on the continent.

According to Africa CDC, in the past 24 hours, the number of recovered people in the organization’s 55 member states was 7,072, for a total of 1,325,204 since the start of the pandemic.

The first case of covid-19 in Africa emerged in Egypt on February 14, and Nigeria was the first country in sub-Saharan Africa to report cases of infection on February 28.

The covid-19 pandemic has already caused more than one million and eighty-seven thousand deaths and more than 38.2 million cases of infection worldwide, according to a report made by the French agency AFP.

The disease is transmitted by a new coronavirus detected in late December in Wuhan, a city in central China.


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