Africa ready to transition out of pandemic phase of COVID

Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, head of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Africa says that the continent is transitioning out of the pandemic phase and will be managing the virus over the long term. The report on this was published by Al Jazeera last February 10, 2022.

Moeti said, “The pandemic is moving into a different phase … We think that we’re moving now, especially with the vaccination expected to increase, into what might become a kind of endemic living with the virus. 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. Against the odds, including huge inequities in access to vaccinations, we’ve weathered the COVID-19 storm with resilience and determination.”

Editor’s Note: These pronouncements from Moeti contrast directly with that of WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus who recently said, “Each country is facing a different situation with different challenges, but the pandemic is not over. I repeat, the pandemic is not over.”[1]https://www.webmd.com/lung/news/20220317/who-covid-echo-arond-world

Africa is a curious case. From the very beginning, the continent has recorded very low cases and deaths. And even with only 20% of its target population vaccinated, the continent is now thinking of transitioning out of the pandemic phase. How are they able to do that, when a country like the Philippines, with a vaccination rate of more than 50% still thinks that getting a 90% vaccination rate is the only way we can transition out of the pandemic phase? [Read Will 90% COVID Inoculation Rate Protect Filipinos from Surge of New Cases and High Mortality?].

Image 1: Hong Kong, the Philipines and Brunei all have higher vax rates compared to Africa. Despite this, Africa’s cases and death rates are also much lower.

Meanwhile, the highly vaccinated European Union (EU) is consistently worried about Africa because the continent does not have the capacity to vaccinate all its citizens. As a contribution to making sure the COVID ends in the world, the EU has decided to increase its spending to boost vaccinations in Africa.

But as you can see in Image 2 below, the EU has nothing to worry about, considering Africa is doing so much better than they are, even though the continent has not been able to implement mandatory vaccinations and vaccine passports. [We know that the more vaccinated a country is, the higher its COVID cases and deaths are [read Big Data Analysis of 145 Countries Shows Vaccine Deployment Led to Increase in COVID Deaths and Cases, Worldwide data from 185 nations prove that the highest death rates are in the most vaccinated countries; we are now in a pandemic of the vaccinated].

Image 2: COVID cases and deaths are higher in the highly vaccinated European Union than in Africa.

The African experience is proof that if governments focused only on strengthening their health care services and giving support to the vulnerable, instead of wasting energy and resources in keeping people indoors, measuring distances between individuals, imposing masking mandates, and forcing people to take the vaccine, maybe they would also be in a position to say that their countries are ready to transition out of the panic phase.

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