There are concerns among health experts in Africa that the continent is getting overwhelmed by the Covid-19 pandemic.
It follows news of a 43% jump in Covid-19 deaths from last week, according to the World Health Organization.
The WHO’s weekly briefing revealed that infections and hospital admissions have now risen and many countries are facing shortages of oxygen and intensive-care beds.
On Thursday the WHO Africa office revealed that the case fatality rate which is the proportion of deaths among confirmed cases now stands at 2.6% against the global average of 2.2%.
Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa, told reporters that “Africa’s third wave continues its destructive pathway, pushing past yet another grim milestone as the continent’s case count tops six million.”
“This is a clear warning sign that hospitals in the most impacted countries are reaching a breaking point,” Moeti said.
Africa is recording surge in infections, partly due to the presence of the highly transmissible Delta variant of the virus.
This new variant of the virus is present in 21 African countries with Moeti saying this is leaving a “brutal cost in lives lost” in its trail.
#COVID19 cases in #Africa have risen for eight straight weeks, topping 6 million on 13 July 2021. Over the past month, the continent recorded an additional 1 million cases. This is the shortest time it’s taken so far to add 1 million cases. pic.twitter.com/o8OAR7O0Db
— WHO African Region (@WHOAFRO) July 15, 2021
Majority of the fatalities being recorded so far in Africa come from Namibia, South Africa, Tunisia, Uganda and Zambia.
Just within a period of one month infections have increase by 1 million, compared with the three months it took to rise to 5 million from 4 million, Moeti said.
With high public fatigue setting in and many populations no longer observing the Covid-19 health protocols to prevent the spread of the virus, the battle against the virus is becoming daunting.
Many African countries are also struggling to buy vaccines due to lack of funding as well as supply challenges.
Only 53 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered so far across the continent. Out of a population of 1.3 billion, only 18 million Africans are fully vaccinated.