Africa is in the controlling phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, said the World Health Organization’s Africa Director Matshidiso Moeti. The increased pace of the immunization made its crucial contribution to the health of the whole continent, Reuters reports.
Africa is still struggling with the COVID-9 but now, the health authorities see a “light at the end of the tunnel”, according to Moeti. Now, the continent can end the disruption and destruction the pathogen has left in its path, and gain back control over the lives. However, COVID-19 pandemic has cost Africa dearly, with more than 242,000 lives lost and tremendous damage to economies.
“Over the past two years, the African continent has gotten smarter, faster and better at responding to each new surge in cases of COVID-19,” said Moeti. “Against the odds, including huge inequities in access to vaccinations, we’ve weathered the COVID-19 storm with resilience and determination… ,” Moeti added.
While Moeti’ expresses optimism, WHO Geneva’s Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warns of the deterioration of the epidemiological situation across the globe. He has said repeatedly the pandemic is not over and that it is premature to think that the end might be imminent. Especially Africa, the poorest continent.
The immunization pace is still slow in Africa
Commenting on the improvement of the situation, Moeti emphasized that only 11 percent of Africa’s adult population has been vaccinated. Africa received more than 670 million vaccine doses, and the vaccination process is still slow. To reach the levels of immunity achieved in other parts of the world, vaccine uptake needs to be significantly accelerated across the region, urgently.
“While many [rich] countries are considering booster shots, 85 percent of Africans have yet to receive a single shot,” WHO official added.