Coronavirus Spreads through Africa


Africa reported its first case of the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, on February 15, 2020-a full two months after it was first identified in China. Once it arrived on the continent, the virus spread to over 30 countries in less than a month. North Africa has seen the highest number of COVID-19 infections thus far, though more West African countries have been affected than any other region on the continent. With confirmed cases in Africa rising at a rate of approximately 26 percent per day, time is of the essence if Africa is to avoid the worst effects of the pandemic. While nearly two-thirds of affected African countries thus far have reported only imported infections, slowing the exponential expansion of the virus will increasingly rely on reducing in-country transmissions.