The World Health Organization (WHO) projected on Thursday that the number of COVID-19-related deaths on the African continent will drop by about 94% in 2022 compared to the previous year.
In Africa, 2021 was the deadliest year of the epidemic, with COVID-19 being the seventh leading cause of death, just behind malaria.
“Our most recent analysis indicates that the expected number of deaths in the African region would decrease to approximately 60 per day by 2022… We lost an average of 970 persons every day last year “Director of WHO Africa Matshidiso Moeti addressed a virtual news conference.
The WHO attributed the disparity in numbers to higher immunisation, stronger pandemic response, and natural immunity from previous outbreaks.
COVID mortality rates in Africa have varied. In part due to co-morbidities that raise the risk of death, richer countries and southern African states have around double the mortality rates of poorer nations in other areas of Africa, according to a WHO report.
According to the estimate, around 23,000 deaths are anticipated by the end of the year, assuming present variations and transmission patterns remain unchanged.
The data suggest that just one out of every seventy-one COVID cases are registered in Africa and that about one out of every three deaths had been overlooked.
Early on in the pandemic, it was difficult for African nations to obtain COVID medicines because wealthy nations hoarded available doses. However, many African nations are now well-supplied with vaccines but are having problems distributing them. The causes include reluctance and logistical considerations.
Africa had recorded over 11.8 million confirmed COVID infections and over 250,000 deaths by the end of May.
“The task is not yet complete. Every time we take a moment to relax, COVID-19 reemerges. The threat of new variations persists, and we must be prepared to deal with this persistent menace “Moeti delivered the briefing’s opening remarks.