AccScience Publishing / IJPS / Volume 6 / Issue 2 / DOI: 10.18063/ijps.v6i2.1222
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RESEARCH ARTICLE

COVID-19 and socioeconomic development in Africa: The first 6 months (February 2020-August 2020)

M. Michel Garenne1,2,3,4*
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1 Senior Fellow, FERDI, Université d’Auvergne, Clermont-Ferrand, France
2 Institut Pasteur, Épidémiologie des Maladies Émergentes, Paris, France
3 Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD), UMI Résiliences, Bondy, France
4 MRC/Wits Rural Public Health and Health Transitions Research Unit, School of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg
© Invalid date by the Authors. Licensee AccScience Publishing, Singapore. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution -Noncommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0) ( https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ )
Abstract

The study covers the first 6 months of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) epidemics in 56 African countries (February 2020-August 2020). It links epidemiological parameters (incidence, case fatality) with demographic parameters (population density, urbanization, population concentration, fertility, mortality, and age structure), with economic parameters (gross domestic product [GDP] per capita, air transport), and with public health parameters (medical density). Epidemiological data are cases and deaths reported to the World Health Organization, and other variables come from databases of the United Nations agencies. Results show that COVID-19 spread fairly rapidly in Africa, although slower than in the rest of the world: In 3 months, all countries were affected, and in 6 months, approximately 1.1 million people (0.1% of the population) were diagnosed positive for COVID-19. The dynamics of the epidemic were fairly regular between April and July, with a net reproduction rate R0 = 1.35, but tended to slow down afterward, when R0 fell below 1.0 at the end of July. Differences in incidence were very large between countries and were correlated primarily with population density and urbanization, and to a lesser extent, with GDP per capita and population age structure. Differences in case fatality were smaller and correlated primarily with mortality level. Overall, Africa appeared very heterogeneous, with some countries severely affected while others very little.

Keywords
COVID-19
Demographic transition
Health transition
Economic development
Africa
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International Journal of Population Studies, Electronic ISSN: 2424-8606 Print ISSN: 2424-8150, Published by AccScience Publishing