848 infected, 130 recoveries and 14 deaths: these are the official figures related to the coronavirus in Cameroon. But the numbers are likely to be much higher. In Cameroon, there is a lack not only of protective masks and ventilators, but also of tests and laboratory chemicals.
At the end of March, Alibaba Group co-founder Jack Ma donated 20,000 test kits, 100,000 masks and 1,000 protective suits to the country – just a drop in the ocean for the 25 million inhabitants.
Since 3 April, The Laquintine Hospital in Douala has had a functioning laboratory where Covid-19 tests are possible.
On April 9, a new app was launched to let users know about the Corona virus and its spread. With the “Coronatrack” app, doctors and patients can also exchange ideas.
On 10 April, the government adopted seven other measures to combat the virus, including a mask requirement in all public areas. In addition, the tests as well as the awareness-raising campaigns in the countryside will be intensified.
But it is precisely the simplest measures, such as washing hands with water and soap, that are not easy to implement in some African countries. Water is often not available and has to be bought expensively and brought home. Many people do not want to be tested because they cannot afford to spend 14 days in quarantine. The African Union estimates that a third of all tax revenues on the continent could collapse. Then there would be even less money for the already weak health systems.
Moses Masika, a virologist at the University of Nairobi, says that consumables are largely lacking. Rich industrialized countries sometimes compete fiercely with the poorest, the WHO observes. In Senegal, therefore, new test methods against Covid-19 are being tested at the Pasteur Institute, where the costs can be many times lower.
13 April: From today, protective masks must be worn in public and are mandatory in the markets. Security controls ensure implementation.
The Association of People from the Northern Region of Cameroon, based in Douala, has raised funds to enable locals, especially the poorer population, to comply with this measure.
More than 15,000 infections have been confirmed across Africa, but 19 countries have not yet reported any deaths. How bad the Corona pandemic will be in Africa is divided even among experts. Some believe that Africa’s experience in disease control, the tropical climate and the young population will curb the spread. Others believe that the greatest humanitarian catastrophe in history is imminent.
Comment by Bill Gates: https://www.ardmediathek.de/ard/player/Y3JpZDovL2Rhc2Vyc3RlLmRlL3RhZ2Vzc2NoYXUyNC9kOTk3ZTdkYy1iMDI0LTQ1NjQtYjM2Mi0xMmE2ZDFlNTI2ZWIvMQ/corona-krise-in-afrika-schnelle-ausbreitung-des-virus-befuerchtet