Emerging and re-emerging pathogens over the last 40 years have highlighted the need for a balanced and well-managed input of resources, like fixed medical equipment and consumable-like medical supplies and medicines to effectively mitigate the effects of these pathogens.
Between 2001 and 2016, out of the 5,462 public health events recorded by WHO, 1,508 (28%) occurred in the WHO Africa region, out of which 81% were authenticated. In 2018 alone, a total of 96 new infectious disease outbreaks were reported across 36 African countries. This suggests a high burden of recurring and multiple disease outbreaks will continue to strain the limited health infrastructure and systems within the African continent. Moreover, these public health hazards which primarily lead to high morbidity and mortality also have social and economic impact resulting in poorer quality of life and lower productivity constraining economic growth across the continent.
These health emergencies and vulnerabilities must be addressed more systematically. Proactive and robust measures are required to plan, prepare, prevent, and respond to public health outbreaks and ensure Africans live a healthy and prosperous life. The Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) is mandated to support African Union Member States in the preparation and response to disease outbreaks and other public health emergencies.
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