The World Health Organization estimates that the number of COVID-19 infections in Africa could be seven times higher than official data suggests, while deaths from the virus could be two to three times higher, its regional head said on Thursday.
“We’re very much aware that our surveillance systems problems that we had on the continent, with access to testing supplies, for example, have led to an underestimation of the cases,” Dr Matshidiso Moeti told a regular online media briefing.
As of today, COVID-19 detection in Africa has been restricted to people reporting symptoms when they visit health facilities as well as travelers arriving and departing across borders, resulting in a significant underreporting owing to the high percentage of asymptomatic cases in the continent.
According to www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/, a website dedicated to the mointoring of reported cases of the cases in real time globally, Africa has reported 11, 280, 565 cases of the disease and 243,450 deaths as of 7.45pm GMT on Thursday while worldwide 404,728,943 infections and 5,799,544 deaths have been recorded.
In October, the organisation had said at least six in seven COVDI-19 infections are not reported on the continient.
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