The World Health Organisation (WHO) Regional Office for Africa located in Brazzaville, Congo, says there are over 2.2 million confirmed COVID-19 cases on the African continent.
The UN health agency gave the update on its regional official Twitter account @WHOAFRO.
WHO stated on its dashboard that there were over 2.2 million confirmed COVID-19 cases on the African continent – with more than 1.9 million recoveries and 53,000 deaths cumulatively.
Meanwhile, WHO’s Director General, Tedros Ghebreyesus, says as countries plan to roll out COVID-19 vaccines in the coming days, weeks and months, health workers and other at-risk populations should be prioritised for vaccination.
Ghebreyesus who spoke from WHO headquarters in Geneva, said priority should also be given to the elderly and people at high risk of serious disease in administering the COVID-19 vaccine.
“People at highest risk of serious disease or death as a result of age are also a high priority group because protecting them will reduce severe disease and death and take the burden off health systems.
“As supply increases, the next groups would include those who have higher risk of severe disease because of their underlying conditions, and marginalised groups at higher risk.
“The recommendations are based on the so-called Values Framework and Population Prioritisation Roadmap, issued by a WHO advisory group on immunisation.
“In the initial stages of rollout, with only a small proportion of a country’s population immunised, it’s vital that governments, communities and individuals continue using proven public health tools,” he said.
According to him, WHO continues to work to better understand how many people on the planet have been exposed to the virus, and how long immunity lasts in those who have been infected.
Hundreds of seroprevalence studies conducted worldwide reveal most of the global population remains susceptible to infection.
Seroprevalence studies look for antibodies in the blood and help in understanding how long immunity from natural infection lasts, said Ghebreyesus, which could inform understanding of vaccination immunity. (NAN)