Severity: Warning Alert

Health: Additional countries in Sub-Saharan Africa report COVID-19 cases during early May. Maintain basic health precautions.

The locations affected by this alert are:

  • Angola
  • Benin
  • Botswana
  • Burkina Faso
  • Burundi
  • Cameroon
  • Cape Verde
  • Central African Republic
  • Chad
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Congo
  • Cote d'Ivoire
  • Djibouti
  • Equatorial Guinea
  • Eritrea
  • Ethiopia
  • Gabon
  • Gambia
  • Ghana
  • Guinea
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Kenya
  • Lesotho
  • Liberia
  • Madagascar
  • Mali
  • Mauritania
  • Mauritius
  • Mayotte
  • Mozambique
  • Namibia
  • Niger
  • Nigeria
  • Reunion
  • Rwanda
  • Sao Tome And Principe
  • Senegal
  • Sierra Leone
  • Somalia
  • South Africa
  • Sudan
  • Eswatini (Swaziland)
  • Tanzania
  • Togo
  • Uganda
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe
  • Seychelles
  • Victoria
  • South Sudan

This alert began 14 May 2020 11:30 GMT and is scheduled to expire 14 Jul 2020 23:59 GMT.

  • Incident: Cases of coronavirus disease, local transmission
  • Location(s): Sub-Saharan Africa (map)
  • Period: February-May 2020

Summary
Several countries in Sub-Saharan Africa report imported cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), some with human-to-human community transmission. Some countries provide more detailed location information than others. The following countries have identified COVID-19 cases as of May 14:

Countries reporting community transmission:

  • South Africa: 12,074 cases
  • Ghana: 5,127 cases
  • Nigeria: 4,787 cases
  • Cameroon: 2,689 cases; some in Yaounde
  • Guinea: 2,298 cases
  • Senegal: 1,995 cases; some in Dakar
  • Cote d'Ivoire: 1,857 cases; some in Abidjan
  • Sudan: 1,660 cases; at least one case in Khartoum
  • Somalia: 1,170 cases
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo: 1,169 cases; some in Kinshasa
  • Mayotte: 1,095 cases
  • Niger: 854 cases
  • Burkina Faso: 766 cases; some in Ouagadougou
  • Mali: 730 cases
  • Kenya: 715 cases
  • Equatorial Guinea: 522 cases
  • Tanzania: 509 cases
  • Zambia: 441 cases
  • Reunion: 437 cases
  • Chad: 357 cases
  • Republic of Congo: 333 cases
  • Mauritius: 332 cases
  • Benin: 327 cases
  • Rwanda: 286 cases
  • Cape Verde: 270 cases; at least one case in the island of Boa Vista
  • Ethiopia: 261 cases; some in Addis Ababa
  • Liberia: 212 cases
  • Togo: 199 cases
  • Madagascar: 192 cases
  • Central African Republic: 179 cases; at least one case in Bangui
  • Uganda: 126 cases
  • Mozambique: 104 cases
  • Malawi: 58
  • Eritrea: 39 cases
  • Zimbabwe: 37 cases; at least one case in Victoria Falls
  • Burundi: 27 cases
  • Namibia: 16 cases
  • Comoros: 11 cases


Countries where community transmission has not been determined:
 

  • Gabon: 863 cases
  • Guinea-Bissau: 820 cases
  • Sierra Leone: 338 cases
  • Eswatini: 184 cases
  • South Sudan: 174 cases
  • São Tomé and Príncipe: 165 cases
  • Angola: 45 cases; some in Luanda
  • Botswana: 24 cases
  • Gambia: 23 cases
  • Seychelles: 11 cases
  • Mauritania: 8 cases
  • Lesotho: 1 case



Background and Analysis
Officials may add additional cases and locations to this list at any time as disease surveillance and testing continues. The US CDC maintains a "Warning-Level 3" travel health notice due to global COVID-19 transmission. This is the highest warning level and indicates that authorities recommend avoiding nonessential travel. It is recommended that travelers avoid any contact with ill individuals and frequently wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are unavailable, alcohol-based hand sanitizer (minimum 60 percent alcohol) should be used. Following international travel, all travelers should stay home for 14 days after returning home, monitor their health, practice social distancing, and avoid interaction with ill individuals.

Older individuals, infants, and those with chronic illness are more susceptible to infection and are at increased risk for severe complications. Human-to-human transmission is occurring, though it remains unclear how easily the virus spreads between people.

COVID-19 is a viral respiratory disease caused by infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus (previously known as 2019-nCoV). Symptoms occur 1-14 days following exposure (average of 3-7 days). These symptoms include fever, fatigue, cough, difficulty breathing, sometimes worsening to pneumonia and kidney failure - especially in those with underlying medical conditions.

Advice
Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.


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