WELLDONE!! African Countries Praised For Handling Coronavirus Really Well

African countries are still reeling from the effect of measures, such as lockdowns, taken to contain the spread of COVID-19. Though painful, they were a vital part of the successful public health response mounted by many African leaders.

The quick responses by most African countries meant that they were able to avoid the large-scale loss of life seen elsewhere. The 1.8 million infections and 44,000 deaths recorded on the continent by mid-November are a great loss. They are, nevertheless, far from the catastrophic predictions made back in March and April.

But the fight is not yet over: the Africa Centres for Disease Control has recently warned of a fresh wave of infections, reporting almost 9,000 cases a day. With lockdowns easing and borders opening this figure will certainly rise.

If good public health measures helped Africa tackle its first COVID-19 wave, a response led by scientists and researchers must be central to any current and future threats. This was emphasised by several top African scientists gathered at a recent webinar convened to discuss next steps to contain the pandemic.

The strong leadership displayed by many African countries during the pandemic is certainly a lesson for others. But strong leadership needs good science. For Africa, this means that research for treatments and vaccines for COVID-19 must take place here, led by African scientists and tailored to this specific context.

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