COVID 19: Vaccines Might Be the Key to Avoiding Overfull Hospitals, Congo Case Study Shows

COVID 19: Vaccines Might Be the Key to Avoiding Overfull Hospitals, Congo Case Study Shows

  • The least vaccinated country in the world is the Democratic Republic of Congo, which worries health officials
  • They are experiencing overfull hospitals as the fourth wave takes hold of the largely unvaccinated population
  • Their Covid-19 cases are rising dramatically due to the highly transmissible nature of the Omicron variant

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KINSHASA - The least vaccinated country in the world is the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Their capital, Kinshasa, has a Covid-19 treatment centre. Currently only one of the 38 beds is vacant.

In order to facilitate overflow, tents have been erected behind the treatment centre. The patients who require ventilators are attached to old oxygen tanks.

SABC News reports that the DRC is not prepared for the fourth wave of Covid-19, as their low vaccination figures mean that the population are more susceptible to severe, and even fatal, cases of the coronavirus.

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Covid19 in 2021: The year of variants, vaccines, waves and travel bans

Democratic Republic of the Congo, DRC, Covid-19, coronavirus, vaccine, fourth wave
The Democratic Republic of the Congo is unable to cope with a fourth wave of Covid-19. Image: Guerchom Ndebo/Getty Images
Source: Getty Images

The DRC's Covid crisis

Last Monday (20 December) the Covid-19 treatment centre had six cases and by Friday (24 December) they had 36. This represents an 83% increase in cases within a week, which has been attributed to the highly transmissible Omicron variant.

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According to The Sowetan, relatively few people in the DRC have been infected with Covid-19, but health officials are worried about the low vaccination rate. The government is pushing for vaccination, but the socioeconomic situation poses many challenges, such as vaccine hesitancy and remote populations.

In Kinshasa, the government has established a vaccination centre, which administers vaccines to an estimated 200 people a day, but health officials say this is not enough.

20k Durban healthcare workers still unvaccinated, vaccine sites closing down

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20 000 Durban healthcare workers still unvaccinated, vaccination sites closing down for the festive season

Speaking of vaccines, Briefly News previously reported that the festive season is at its peak and as a result, eThekwini is seeing only a few people who are willing to get vaccinated.

The eThekwini Municipality has now taken the decision to close down all vaccination sites as well as pop-up sites that were stationed near beach entrances for the duration of the festive because only five beachgoers have taken advantage of the sites since 16 December.

Msawakhe Mayisela, the Durban city's spokesperson says vaccination sites will be closed on Christmas, Boxing Day and the public holiday that falls on 27 December. The sites will also be closed on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day.

Source: Briefly News

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