Photo by Jane Barlow - WPA Pool/Getty Images

7 African Countries Commit to Coronavirus Antibody Testing in Bid to Re-Open Economy

WHO has identified 7 African countries for coronavirus antibody testing to understand the extent of the Covid-19 outbreak on the continent.

Dr John Nkengasong, head of African Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, has reportedly announced a continental testing project in countries that have low test rates. Zimbabwe, Sierra Leone, Cameroon, Zambia, Nigeria, Morocco and Liberia have been selected as pilot groups to undertake the project. The selected countries have agreed and shown commitment to the announcement.

Antibody tests were first approved by the South African government in July this year. According to Medical Brief, these tests are different in that they test blood for antibodies that have formed as an immune response in individuals infected with coronavirus. Medically termed "Serelogy tests", they are useful in picking up evidence that a person had the virus even if they did not show symptoms. "Antibody serology tests, in general, are useful in establishing whether a person has acquired immunity to a virus and is also useful in testing whether or not a vaccine against an infectious disease is working," explained South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA).

Keep reading... Show less
Photo by Femi Adewuyi

Photos: A ‘Behind-the-Scenes’ Look at the Experiences of Nigeria's Frontline Pandemic Workers

Nigerian doctor and photographer, Femi Adewuyi, set out to document the realities of essential workers and patients at the peak of Lagos' coronavirus outbreak.

The workers who have now found themselves on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic have always been essential, we just did not notice them. Rather, it has taken a worldwide health crisis for us to realize that we depended on them and that they are risking their lives to keep the world alive. With the lockdown on most nonessential work, we are now seeing the faces of the individuals we need to survive the pandemic.

Healthcare workers are more vulnerable to COVID-19 infection than the general population because they are frequently in contact with affected individuals. According to the World Health Organization, one in ten health workers is infected with coronavirus in some countries. In May, reports by the International Council of Nurses revealed that at least 90,000 healthcare workers have been infected and more than 260 nurses had died in the COVID-19 pandemic.

In Nigeria, over 800 healthcare workers have been infected with the coronavirus since the first case was confirmed in February. "We have had 812 health care workers infected, they are not just numbers, 29 of these work for NCDC, they are people I know, they have families, wives and children," said Chikwe Ihekweazu, Director General of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox


Un Fotoperiodista Afrocolombiano Documenta La Crisis del Coronavirus en Chocó

El fotógrafo Jeison Riascos captura no solo las historias dramáticas de la pandemia sino también la solidaridad de los habitantes del Chocó.

Photos: An Afro-Colombian Photojournalist Documents the Coronavirus Crisis in Chocó

Photographer Jeison Riascos is capturing not just dramatic stories from the pandemic but also the solidarity shown by residents of his hometown, Quibdó.

Zainab Johnson is Creating Unapologetic Comedy

The standup comedian, actor and podcast host talks about growing up a Black, Muslim woman in New York and what it's like fasting for Ramadan in a COVID-19 world.

The Man Introducing China to Afrobeats Through Dance

Until COVID-19 hit, Ghanaian artist Yoofi Greene was China's Afrobeats evangelist. Now he's eager to return and finish what he started.


Rwanda Is Using Robots to Screen COVID-19 Patients

The five new robots have the ability "to screen 50 to 150 people per minute," says the Health Ministry.