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2.
Emerg Infect Dis ; 27(12): 3133-3136, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1496965

ABSTRACT

As the coronavirus pandemic continues, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) sequence data are required to inform vaccine efforts. We provide SARS-CoV-2 sequence data from South Sudan and document the dominance of SARS-CoV-2 lineage B.1.525 (Eta variant) during the country's second wave of infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Pandemics , South Sudan/epidemiology
3.
Disasters ; 45 Suppl 1: S195-S215, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1434675

ABSTRACT

Discussions on African responses to Covid-19 have focused on the state and its international backers. Far less is known about a wider range of public authorities, including chiefs, humanitarians, criminal gangs, and armed groups. This paper investigates how the pandemic provided opportunities for claims to and contests over power in Uganda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and South Sudan. Ethnographic research is used to contend that local forms of public authority can be akin to miniature sovereigns, able to interpret dictates, policies, and advice as required. Alongside coping with existing complex protracted emergencies, many try to advance their own agendas and secure benefits. Those they seek to govern, though, do not passively accept the new normal, instead often challenging those in positions of influence. This paper assesses which of these actions and reactions will have lasting effects on local notions of statehood and argues for a public authorities lens in times of crisis.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Democratic Republic of the Congo , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , South Sudan/epidemiology , Uganda
4.
BMC Med ; 19(1): 160, 2021 07 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1301851

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: East Africa is home to 170 million people and prone to frequent outbreaks of viral haemorrhagic fevers and various bacterial diseases. A major challenge is that epidemics mostly happen in remote areas, where infrastructure for Biosecurity Level (BSL) 3/4 laboratory capacity is not available. As samples have to be transported from the outbreak area to the National Public Health Laboratories (NPHL) in the capitals or even flown to international reference centres, diagnosis is significantly delayed and epidemics emerge. MAIN TEXT: The East African Community (EAC), an intergovernmental body of Burundi, Rwanda, Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, and South Sudan, received 10 million € funding from the German Development Bank (KfW) to establish BSL3/4 capacity in the region. Between 2017 and 2020, the EAC in collaboration with the Bernhard-Nocht-Institute for Tropical Medicine (Germany) and the Partner Countries' Ministries of Health and their respective NPHLs, established a regional network of nine mobile BSL3/4 laboratories. These rapidly deployable laboratories allowed the region to reduce sample turn-around-time (from days to an average of 8h) at the centre of the outbreak and rapidly respond to epidemics. In the present article, the approach for implementing such a regional project is outlined and five major aspects (including recommendations) are described: (i) the overall project coordination activities through the EAC Secretariat and the Partner States, (ii) procurement of equipment, (iii) the established laboratory setup and diagnostic panels, (iv) regional training activities and capacity building of various stakeholders and (v) completed and ongoing field missions. The latter includes an EAC/WHO field simulation exercise that was conducted on the border between Tanzania and Kenya in June 2019, the support in molecular diagnosis during the Tanzanian Dengue outbreak in 2019, the participation in the Ugandan National Ebola response activities in Kisoro district along the Uganda/DRC border in Oct/Nov 2019 and the deployments of the laboratories to assist in SARS-CoV-2 diagnostics throughout the region since early 2020. CONCLUSIONS: The established EAC mobile laboratory network allows accurate and timely diagnosis of BSL3/4 pathogens in all East African countries, important for individual patient management and to effectively contain the spread of epidemic-prone diseases.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Community Networks , Dengue/epidemiology , Hemorrhagic Fever, Ebola/epidemiology , Laboratories , Mobile Health Units , Burundi/epidemiology , COVID-19/therapy , Dengue/prevention & control , Epidemics , Hemorrhagic Fever, Ebola/prevention & control , Hemorrhagic Fever, Ebola/therapy , Humans , Kenya/epidemiology , Mobile Health Units/economics , Public Health , Rwanda/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , South Sudan/epidemiology , Tanzania/epidemiology , Uganda/epidemiology
5.
Bull World Health Organ ; 99(1): 34-40, 2021 Jan 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1264306

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To describe an intervention to scale up tuberculosis preventive treatment for people living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in South Sudan, 2017-2020. METHODS: Staff of the health ministry and United States President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief designed an intervention targeting the estimated 30 400 people living with HIV on antiretroviral therapy across South Sudan. The intervention comprised: (i) developing sensitization and operational guidance for clinicians to put tuberculosis preventive treatment delivery into clinical practice; (ii) disseminating monitoring and evaluation tools to document scale-up; (iii) implementing a programmatic pilot of tuberculosis preventive treatment; and (iv) identifying a mechanism for procurement and delivery of isoniazid to facilities dispensing tuberculosis preventive treatment. Staff aggregated routine programme data from facility registers on the numbers of people living with HIV who started on tuberculosis preventive treatment across all clinical sites providing this treatment during July 2019-March 2020. FINDINGS: Tuberculosis preventive treatment was implemented in 13 HIV treatment sites during July-October 2019, then in 26 sites during November 2019-March 2020. During July 2019-March 2020, 6503 people living with HIV started tuberculosis preventive treatment. CONCLUSION: Lessons for other low-resource settings may include supplementing national guidelines with health ministry directives, clinician guidance and training, and an implementation pilot. A cadre of field supervisors can rapidly disseminate a standardized approach to implementation and monitoring of tuberculosis preventive treatment, and this approach can be used to strengthen other tuberculosis-HIV services. Procuring a reliable and steady supply of tuberculosis preventive treatment medication is crucial.


Subject(s)
HIV Infections/epidemiology , Tuberculosis/epidemiology , Tuberculosis/prevention & control , Anti-Retroviral Agents/administration & dosage , Female , HIV Infections/drug therapy , Humans , Incidence , Male , Pilot Projects , Prevalence , South Sudan/epidemiology
6.
Pan Afr Med J ; 37(Suppl 1): 49, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1069982

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 is a highly infectious disease that has started to creep into African countries including South Sudan. Following confirmation of the first few cases, the government enacted preventive measures to curb community transmission. However, daunting challenges deter these precautionary measures. Just after two years the country took its independence from Sudan, civil conflicts sparked and continue to overburden and undermine the fragile healthcare system. The conflicts have caused disruption of health services, destruction of health facilities, death and migration of health workers, displacements of a huge number of people. This scenario continues while the country is grappling with the pandemic. Other concerning issues include: insufficient COVID-19 testing capacity, limited medical and personal protective equipment and an inadequate number of health workers which leave the country ill-equipped in the battle against the pandemic. Non-compliance of COVID-19 prevention protocols by the general public due to high rate of poverty and social stigma contribute to the spread of the virus. The current situation in South Sudan make evident that there is a need for an immediate ceasefire by the warring sides so the available health services including COVID-19 efforts, are not disrupted to ensure the safety of all. The government needs to further build the capacity of its health sector with the cooperation of its international health allies to be able to provide its citizens with the health services they need.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Delivery of Health Care/organization & administration , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19/prevention & control , Capacity Building , Civil Disorders , Humans , Poverty , Social Stigma , South Sudan/epidemiology
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