A number that is 97 times more than the number of officially announced cases.
More than two-thirds of Africans have been infected with the coronavirus responsible for COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic, more than 97 times the officially announced confirmed cases, according to a study by the World Health Organization (WHO) published Thursday. .
According to this study, by September 2021, 800 million Africans had been exposed to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, while 8.2 million cases were reported. The World Health Organization estimates that a decrease in the number of true infections was occurring everywhere, but it was greatest in Africa. On average, worldwide, she said, real infections were 16 times higher than confirmed cases. The agency’s regional director for Africa, Dr Machidiso Moeti, added that the continent’s high exposure to the virus and the current low infection rates did not mean the continent could claim victory over COVID-19.
Vaccination is not a great success
“The risks of developing more lethal and stronger variants of acquired immunity in previous infections cannot be excluded,” she said in a statement, and called for extensive testing. The study found that exposure to the virus increased from 3% in June 2020 to 65% in September 2021, with sharp increases following the emergence of beta and delta variants. Studies estimate that 45% of the world’s population will have been infected by September 2021, but the World Health Organization said comparisons were difficult because the studies covered different time periods. Africa has, to date, fully vaccinated 209 million people, or 16% of its population, against COVID-19.
The World Health Organization and other agencies are trying to increase vaccination rates, but it is being absorbed low, in part due to the idea that vaccination is less beneficial because the now dominant variant of Omicron is less virulent. The World Health Organization says that vaccinating people who are already infected offers better protection than immunity from infection alone.
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