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The use of digital technology can boost vaccine equity and provide blueprints for health sector transformation.
The Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) Director John Nkengasong said the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent health and socio-economic challenges have accelerated partnerships for innovation in Africa towards building new public health order.
"Whilst COVID-19 has been an undeniable tragedy of unprecedented proportions, it has also accelerated partnerships for innovation," Nkengasong said.
This statement followed a recent meeting hosted by the Africa CDC, a specialized healthcare agency of the African Union (AU) that brought together some 60 leading tech and telecom leaders to further explore how technology and innovation would shape the post-COVID-19 new public health order.
The innovation-themed gathering mainly explored further partnerships and collaboration across the African technology landscape to scale promising pan-African innovation platforms such as the African Trusted Travel Platform, which automates cross-border verification of health certificates for testing or vaccines.
The participants deliberated on how specific interventions such as the use of digital technology would boost vaccine equity and accountability in Africa and quell hesitancy can provide general blueprints for health sector transformation.
They also emphasized that lockdowns, which were highly effective in the short term, cannot be a sustainable solution in the longer term given that more than 80 percent of employment is estimated to be informal, and 85 percent of the population live on less than US$5.50 per day.
As of Sunday morning, the Africa CDC had reported 4,167,350 COVID-19 cases and 111,561 related deaths in this continent.
#FromTheSouth News Bit | Kenyan farmers stress that lack of markets means scarce food. 60% of the small farmers are self-employed and 32% have suffered lost of incomes during the Covid-19 pandemic. pic.twitter.com/6TyoiDlMSH