The Africa Centres for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention has intensified efforts across Africa in an attempt to combat the widespread pandemic Covid-19.
According to a report, not fewer than 19 countries in Africa were said to have reported cases on the virus. These include South Africa, Nigeria, Egypt, Senegal, Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Togo, Cameron etc.
In response to the spread of the disease, CDC has trained and equipped laboratories across 43 countries to combat the spread of the virus.
Outside the walls of Africa, the pandemic virus has caused so many deaths with over 100,000 reported cases and 3,500 deaths. Fortunately for Africa, it still reads no more than a dozen cases in the most affected countries.
According to the statement released by the Africa CDC Director, John Nkengasong, he said, “We want to equip the states so they can quickly detect and extenuate the effects of the disease in Africa, and, if eventually widespread transmission occurs, prevent severe illness and mass deaths.”
In all 43 laboratories, each lab has trained representatives with equipment to test for the virus, move and quarantine appropriately. The Africa CDC also gave additional 1,000 test kits to any country that reports cases.
Africa CDC, established in 2017, is with the responsibility of supporting nations to support surveillance, rapid responses, and to put preventive measures in place, against infectious diseases.
Most African countries, with the support of the CDC and the World Health Organization, are preparing for the worst-case. Also, WHO identified thirteen countries that are of higher risk of acquiring the virus due to their more frequent engagement with travelers, and business with China, where the spread of the virus emanated.
These include countries such as Côte d’Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Algeria, Angola, Zambia, Nigeria.
More so, some African countries have not slumbered in the fight such as Côte d’Ivoire, who took preventative measures by installing thermal cameras at the airports.
In an interview, the Ethiopian State Minister for Health, Lia Tadesse, he said that Ethiopia is screening foreign travelers from China, Italy, Japan, Iran, and South Korea, to mitigate the spread of the virus.
Also, the Nigerian government has issued a travel advisory warning to citizens, postponing all travels to China, except it is critical.
More so, according to Health Minister Eteni Longondo of the Democratic Republic of Congo, all travelers arriving from Italy, France, China, and Germany will be quarantined. Those who travel to Congo from other countries with no signs of coronavirus, would be quarantined at home for 14 days, according to Longondo, while those with symptoms of the virus “will be transferred to an isolation site” which the health ministry of the country manages.
Interestingly, the spread of the virus has been slow in Africa. Hopefully, the health system in )6Africa is more equipped and prepared to contain the spread of the Covid-19 in Africa now than during the Ebola virus.