Short Report - Special Collection: COVID-19

COVID-19: Pandemic burden in Sub-Saharan Africa and the right to health – The need for advocacy in the face of growing privatisation

Tshegofatso J. Sehoole
African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine | Vol 12, No 1 | a2476 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/phcfm.v12i1.2476 | © 2020 Tshegofatso J. Sehoole | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 22 April 2020 | Published: 14 September 2020

About the author(s)

Tshegofatso J. Sehoole, Centre for Human Rights, Faculty of Law, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa


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Abstract

For Africa, the backdrop1 against which COVID-19 emerged is a stark one. Although sub-Saharan Africa accounts for 11% of the world’s population, it bears 24% of the global disease burden. The continent is home to 60% of the people with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and over 90% of malarial patients. In this region, infectious diseases such as malaria and HIV cause 69% of deaths. As states respond to COVID-19, we need to keep our eyes open to what effective responses are notifying us about our healthcare systems, so that we can craft sustainable interventions as a result and uphold the right to health. This is especially true in the light of the ongoing nature of pandemics on the continent, making urgent the need to maximise the value of our health system and its resources, as we seek lasting transformation.

Keywords

privatisation; health; human rights; COVID-19; pandemic

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