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Covid-19

A response led by scientists and researchers must be central to any current and future threats. Donwilson Odhiambo/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
Strong leadership fought Covid-19 in Africa: the next step is to harness research

African countries are still reeling from the effect of measures, such as lockdowns, taken to contain the spread of Covid-19...

By Monique Wasunna 12 Nov 2020

How The Plane Project is improving basic healthcare for thousands of Africans
How The Plane Project is improving basic healthcare for thousands of Africans

Using aviation as a tool to empower, enrich and enhance the lives of the underprivileged, non-profit organisation, The Plane Project is ensuring continued access to essential healthcare services and basic needs items, against the backdrop of the global Covid-19 pandemic...

9 Nov 2020

Dr Matshidiso Moeti, regional head, Africa, World Health Organisation
Africa's fragile health system hit hard by Covid-19

A sharp decline in five key essential services in 14 African countries between January and September 2020 is indicative of how the Covid-19 pandemic could deepen the continent's health services crisis...

9 Nov 2020

850,000 animal viruses could be caught by humans, unless we protect nature - UN report
850,000 animal viruses could be caught by humans, unless we protect nature - UN report

Human damage to biodiversity is leading us into a pandemic era. The virus that causes Covid-19, for example, is linked to similar viruses in bats, which may have been passed to humans via pangolins or another species...

By Katie Woolaston and Judith Lorraine Fisher 30 Oct 2020

Professor Christian Happi, director of the African Centre of Excellence for Genomics of Infectious Diseases, displays one of the most advanced automated acid extractors being used in the laboratory. Pius Utomi Ekpei/AFP via Getty Images
Nigeria needs innovation and science investment to help control Covid-19

Nigeria, like other African countries, wasn't spared from the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. To overcome this challenge, countries have been advised to keep testing, treating and isolating to reduce infections...

By Christian Happi & Ifeyinwa Aniebo 28 Oct 2020

During the Covid-19 pandemic, WHO is supporting the Ghana Health Service in their efforts to continue providing essential medical services to the population at the Greater Accra Regional Hospital, Ghana. Photo: WHO / Blink Media - Nana Kofi Acquah
5 quick wins to re-invent Africa's health systems

Since the first case of Covid-19 was confirmed on the continent in February 2020, the response, led by the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) has been commendable. Governments moved quickly to institute public health measures to curb its spread...

By Rachel Ndirangu & Rosemarie Muganda-Onyando 23 Oct 2020

Health providers need to practise in error-proof environments as much as possible. GettyImages
Training can improve patient and health worker safety in sub-Saharan Africa

Medical technology has made great advances. Yet, patients are often harmed while receiving medical care. Globally four out of 10 patients are harmed in primary and outpatient care...

By Paul Kadetz, Abebe Bekele & Agnes Binagwaho 15 Oct 2020

Mathari Hospital is the only psychiatric hospital in Kenya. Simon Maina/AFP via Getty Images
Why Africa needs to invest in mental health

More than 13% of the global burden of disease is due to disorders such as depression, anxiety, schizophrenia and substance abuse. Almost three-quarters of this burden lies in low- and middle-income countries, because of extremely scarce health resources and investment...

By Benedict Weobong & Justice Nonvignon 13 Oct 2020

Many factors influence how consistently women take their HIV medicine. GettyImages
Zambian study points to why some mothers don't carry on taking HIV drugs

There are more than living with HIV in Zambia. The primary source of infection is from mother to child during pregnancy, childbirth or breastfeeding...

By Jerry John Nutor 30 Sep 2020

Shanon Jensen/AFP via Getty Images
How changing vaccine schedules can save costs and lives: findings from South Africa

In 2005, before most low- and middle-income countries started vaccinating children routinely for pneumococcal disease, it caused approximately 1.5 million deaths worldwide annually...

By Jeffrey Dorfman 29 Sep 2020

Majority of tobacco giants failing to advance harm reduction
Majority of tobacco giants failing to advance harm reduction

The first Tobacco Transformation Index finds that the majority of the 15 largest tobacco companies are not making substantive progress in phasing out cigarettes...

28 Sep 2020

Dr Janet Byaruhanga
Why can't Africa manufacture the medicines it needs?

The Covid-19 pandemic exposed Africa's inadequate capabilities and capacity to manufacture and supply essential drugs and personal protective equipment (PPEs) needed to curb the disease...

By Janet Byaruhanga 28 Sep 2020

Investment health-related research is not adequate. GettyImages
African health research needs support: here's one programme that's working

African countries bear a disproportionate burden of infectious and noncommunicable diseases. More than two thirds of people living with HIV are in sub-Saharan Africa...

By Jude Igumbor 1 Sep 2020

#WorldEntrepreneursDay: Teheca is connecting expectant mothers to nurses in Uganda
#WorldEntrepreneursDay: Teheca is connecting expectant mothers to nurses in Uganda

This year, Bizcommunity, in partnership with Seedstars, is acknowledging African startups on World Entrepreneurs' Day 2020...

By Evan-Lee Courie 21 Aug 2020

Congolese artist Chris Shongo paints on the outside wall of the Academie des Beaux-Arts in Kinshasa on June 18, 2020.
Covid-19 shows that the DRC must invest in a health research industry

In early March, the first Covid-19 case was imported from Europe to Kinshasa, the Democratic Republic of Congo's (DRC's) densely populated capital city.

By Dacquin M. Kasumba 14 Aug 2020

Researchers are central to any country’s science preparedness, especially in the face of pandemics.
Menna Hossam/picture alliance via Getty Images
Africa's research capacity is growing. That's good news for pandemic response efforts

The Covid-19 pandemic has put global emergency preparedness under sharp scrutiny. It's also placed national health systems' capacity to predict and respond to major emergencies under the microscope...

By Sam Kinyanjui & Sharon Fonn 24 Jul 2020

Nurses attend the 2015 International Nurses’ Day celebrations in Johannesburg, South Africa. Ihsaan Haffejee/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
Beyond Florence Nightingale: how African nurses have decolonised the profession

This year - 2020 - marks the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingale's birth. It's therefore understandable that it's being marked as the year of the nurse and midwife...

By Timothy A Carey, Agnes Binagwaho & Judy Khanyola 10 Jul 2020

alexandersr/shutterstock
Rwanda's Covid-19 pool testing: a savvy option where there's low viral prevalence

Many countries in East Africa have turned to contact tracing and carrying out Covid-19 tests on thousands of individuals as a way of monitoring and trying to limit transmissions of the new coronavirus. In Rwanda, they have been investigating how they can scale up testing significantly...

By Leon Mutesa 3 Jul 2020

A researcher holds a Covid-19 mRNA vaccine at the National Primate Research Center of Chulalongkorn University in Thailand. Chaiwat Subprasom/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
Africa waited for solutions to past health crises: will it be different for Covid-19?

The World Health Organisation (WHO) recently noted that "researchers are working at break-neck speed" to understand SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease (Covid-19)...

By Hailay Gesesew 2 Jul 2020

A child receives a vaccine against Ebola from a nurse in Goma on August 7, 2019. AUGUSTIN WAMENYA/AFP via Getty Images
The coping mechanisms the DRC is putting in place as it faces Ebola, measles and Covid-19

Ebola, a viral haemorrhagic fever of humans and other primates, has become endemic in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The country has had 10 outbreaks in 40 years and has recently declared the 11th...

By Yap Boum 23 Jun 2020

Anopheles Stephensi, Sem. Photo By BSIP/Universal Images Group via Getty Images
Breakthrough: microbe found to block the transmission of malaria

Malaria has been a terrible human disease from before the neolithic period up to present day. It has likely caused more human deaths than any other infectious agent...

By Jeremy Herren 9 Jun 2020

Healthcare workers testing people in Nairobi, Kenya during a mass testing exercise for Covid-19. Photo by SIMON MAINA/AFP via Getty Images
Sub-Saharan Africa needs to plug local knowledge gap to up its anti-Covid-19 game

Africa remains one of the regions least affected by Covid-19, although evidence suggests it is an evolving and growing pandemic. It is now present in all African countries and territories...

By Alex Ezeh & Sharon Fonn 28 May 2020

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IATA: Governments to reconsider air travel quarantine measures

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) latest analysis shows that the damage to air travel from Covid-19 extends into the medium-term, with long-haul and international travel being the most severely impacted...

14 May 2020

A man being tested as he takes part in an ophthalmological study and examination. Tony Karumba/AFP via Getty Images
How African genetic studies offer hope for preventing a common cause of blindness

Glaucoma is the most common cause of irreversible blindness in the world. It's estimated that by 2040 there will be about 112-million people in the world with glaucoma - mostly in Africa and Asia. The best that medical science can do at present is identify it early and slow or halt its progression...

By Susan Williams 22 Apr 2020

Defy to begin building ventilators in SA this May
Defy to begin building ventilators in SA this May

The company aims to help cater to the demand for medical equipment across sub-Saharan Africa...

14 Apr 2020

Covid-19 likely to exact heavy toll in Africa
Covid-19 likely to exact heavy toll in Africa

The young average age of the population in Africa is likely to be a positive factor, given that Covid-19 seems to be exacting a higher toll on older patients around the world. However...

3 Apr 2020

Shaping Africa's urban areas to withstand future pandemics
Shaping Africa's urban areas to withstand future pandemics

For all their virtues, cities have a major downside. They are a fertile ground for contagion, such as the rapid spread of Covid-19...

By Astrid R.N. Haas 2 Apr 2020

Coronavirus: Recognising illegal wildlife trade as a public health issue
Coronavirus: Recognising illegal wildlife trade as a public health issue

There will be few positives to take from coronavirus. But the global pandemic may yet prove to be an important moment in the attempts to address the illegal wildlife trade...

By Simon Evans 27 Mar 2020

[WATCH] Bill Gates on testing and self-isolation during the Covid-19 pandemic
[WATCH] Bill Gates on testing and self-isolation during the Covid-19 pandemic

In a 2015 TED Talk, following the containment of the Ebola virus in West Africa, philanthropist and Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates warned that "failure to prepare could allow the next epidemic to be dramatically more devastating".

26 Mar 2020

Why defeating coronavirus in one country isn't enough - there needs to be a coordinated global strategy
Why defeating coronavirus in one country isn't enough - there needs to be a coordinated global strategy

As long as the virus is present in any country, it can reenter those that have managed to slow it down - or even ones that eventually eradicate it...

By Nader Habibi 25 Mar 2020

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