Since the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak was first detected in the WHO African Region in Algeria on 25 February 2020, the outbreak continues to evolve with rising incidence cases and associated deaths, although with decreasing case fatality rates. Since our last situation report on 17 June 2020 (External Situation Report 16), an additional 51 839 new confirmed COVID-19 cases (a 28% increase) were reported from 44 countries. Of the 51 839 reported new cases in the region, more than half, (57%) 29 774 were recorded in South Africa. During this period, five countries in the region observed the highest percentage increase in cases: Namibia 112% (from 34 to 72 cases), Mauritania 65% (from 1 887 to 3 121 cases), Benin 60% (from 532 to 850 cases), Botswana 48% (from 60 to 89 cases) and Malawi 42% (from 564 to 803 cases). Mauritania has consistently been among countries recording the highest increase in cases for the past four reporting periods.

Seychelles has reported zero new confirmed COVID-19 cases in the past 77 days, respectively. Although Unite Republic of Tanzania and Equatorial Guinea have no new confirmed cases in our database in the last 46 and 33 days, respectively, there are no official reports indicating zero confirmed cases. Lesotho and Mauritius reported new cases after 20 and 17 days of zero reporting respectively. The eight cases identified in Lesotho were nationals undergoing quarantine with travel history to different affected neighbouring countries, while the three cases in Mauritius had been repatriated from Madagascar. One new country, Burkina Faso joined the list of countries reporting health worker infections with 90 infections retrospectively registered in this period. Atotal of 101 new health worker infections were recorded from seven countries, including Côte d’Ivoire (33), Congo (29), Sierra Leone (12), South Sudan (11), Malawi (8,), Democratic Republic of the Congo (4) and Uganda (4). The region has registered 30 818 new recoveries in this reporting period.

From 17 to 23 June 2020, an additional 941 deaths (25% increase) were reported from 32 countries: South Africa reported the highest number, 477, new deaths in this reporting period, similar to 463 deaths recorded in the previous period. This was followed by Nigeria that registered the second highest number of deaths, at 109 (85% increase) compared to the 59 registered in the previous reporting period. The other countries that reported new deaths include; Algeria (73), Ghana (37), Cameroon (32), Central African Republic (23), Democratic Republic of the Congo (23), Kenya (23), Mauritania (21), Senegal (19), Ethiopia (14), Côte d’Ivoire (12), Congo (10), Gabon (10), Zambia (7), Mali (5), Malawi (5), South Sudan (5), Angola (4), Benin (4), Comoros (4), GuineaBissau (4), Sierra Leone (4), Eswatini (3), Guinea (3), Madagascar (3), Zimbabwe (2), Cabo Verde (1), Gambia (1), Liberia (1) and Niger (1) and Mozambique (1).

In this reporting period (17 to 23 June 2020), the cumulative number of COVID-19 cases in the region has exceeded 200 000 and is now at 236 909 cases, including 236 589 confirmed and 320 probable cases, reported across the 47 countries in the region. The probable cases have been reported from Sao Tome and Principe (319) and Democratic Republic of the Congo (1). Atotal of 5 257 deaths have been reported in 42 countries, giving an overall case fatality ratio (CFR) of 2.2%. Five countries have not registered any COVID-19 related deaths since the beginning of the pandemic in the region: Eritrea, Seychelles, Lesotho, Namibia and Uganda.
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