No fewer than 8,400,000 people could die and 800 million people could be infected by COVID-19 if Africa is not provided access to a vaccine.
The African Union Commission and the Africa CDC, with headquarters in Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, launched the alarm on the possible devastating effects on the continent in the event of an attempt to achieve herd immunity.
The most catastrophic projections indicate that all the residents of the 10 most populated countries in Africa are at risk.
Wessam Mankoula, responsible for the study of incidence of COVID-19 in Africa, stated, “In a continent with more than 1.2 billion people, achieving herd immunity means that between 720 and 840 million people will have to have contracted the infection with a human cost that will be very elevated.”
This is why the Africa Centre for Disease Control has stated that a vaccine is essential in controlling infections.
“Without a vaccine, our healthcare system won’t be able to cope with a large number of cases. Our hospitals will be overwhelmed,” stressed the CDC member
According to the World Health Organization, in order to achieve herd immunity, 60-70 % of the population has to have contracted the virus. To date, Africa is one of the areas less hit by the pandemic with 1.5 million officially confirmed cases and 37,000 deaths, more or less concentrated in four countries: South Africa, Egypt, Morocco and Algeria.