Coronavirus cases in Africa surpasses 30,000. But there’s some good news.

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According to the latest figures provided by Johns Hopkins University, 2,933,926 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed worldwide, including 203,669 deaths and 839,526 recoveries. In Africa, where the spread of the virus seemed to have kicked off late, there are now 30,608 cases, 1,375 deaths and 9,156 people recovered. This means that there are currently 19,868 people active cases, with South Africa reporting the highest number (4,361), followed by Egypt (4,319), Morocco (3,897), Algeria (3,256) and Cameroon (1,518).

Egypt was the first African country to confirm a coronavirus case. More than two months after, the virus appears to have reached almost every nation on the continent. Only Comoros and Lesotho are COVID-19 free.

Politicians are also victims of the highly deadly respiratory disease, death fatalities so far include former President of the Republic of the Congo Jacques Joachim Yhombi-Opango, President Buhari’s Chief-of-Staff, Abba Kyari and Somalia’s former Prime Minister Nur Hassan Hussein. 

Experts warn fragile healthcare systems in many African countries could be overwhelmed in the face of a severe outbreak of COVID-19, However, one interesting point to note is that Africa has a 30% coronavirus recovery rate, the highest compared to other continents.

But a big bone of contention is the continent’s ability to carry out more tests and the state of its healthcare sectors. Despite a donation of more than one million coronavirus testing kits by Chinese billionaire Jack Ma, most African countries lack the equipment needed to detect the disease. South Africa is the country with the most advanced healthcare system. So far, they have tested over 150,000 people out of its 57 million inhabitants. That’s far better than Nigeria, where the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control has tested barely 11,000 samples (does not equate to people) out of a population of 200 million people.

According to Guardian, in the two months since the continent began mobilising to fight the outbreak, less than 500,000 tests have been conducted on the population of more than 1 billion, a level lower than Italy, one of the world’s worst-hit countries. The World Health Organization has warned of 10 million cases on the continent within three to six months, though experts say that the death toll could be lower if authorities are able to move swiftly to contain outbreaks of the disease.

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