What Drove Africa’s Second Wave

A new Lancet study tracks how loosened social restrictions likely drove a more lethal second wave of COVID-19 across Africa.
The daily average of new cases in the first wave, which peaked in July 2020, were 18,273, but rose 30% in the second wave that began at the end of 2020, Al Jazeera reports.

This first comprehensive analysis of the pandemic on the continent looked at COVID-19 data across the 55 countries in African Union from February 14–December 31, 2020.
Another likely contributor to higher caseloads in wave 2: Variants, which are likely changing disease dynamics as they circulate in AU member states, the authors warn.
“These insights reveal a need to improve testing capacity and reinvigorate public health campaigns,” said Africa CDC director John Nkengasong, one of the study’s authors.

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