Tiered public health and social measures (PHSM) systems are a core component of effective COVID-19 preparedness, response and risk communication. These systems use indicators of disease spread to determine the appropriate level of PHSMs at a given time and in a given place, informing targeted interventions that are appropriate for different levels of disease transmission. These systems empower the public to stay safe by keeping people informed about the risk of COVID-19 in their area. If designed and implemented effectively, a tiered PHSM system can help national decision-makers reduce SARSCoV-2 transmission and save lives while avoiding the implementation of PHSMs that are unnecessarily harsh or disruptive socially and/or economically. Finding this balance is crucial in the ongoing fight against COVID-19.
As of May 2021, few African Union (AU) Member States have implemented tiered PHSM or alert-level systems for COVID-19 at the national level to guide PHSM implementation (Appendix C); these efforts do not address regional or continental level situational awareness. The Partnership for Evidence-Based Response for COVID-19 (PERC) has developed a continent-level dashboard to provide this situational awareness.
This document describes the continent-level PHSM dashboard and explains how this framework can be adapted to a national COVID-19 tiered PHSM system.