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  • Updated: March 05, 2021

COVID-19 Kills More African Men Than Women – WHO Study

COVID-19 Kills More African Men Than Women – WHO Study

Studies have shown that women in Africa are less likely to die from COVID-19 complications than men, but more likely to succumb to maternal complications as a result of limited access to reproductive services since the pandemic started, the United Nations said on Thursday, citing reports.

A study of 28 African countries including Guinea, Mauritius and Uganda, showed that on average women accounted for a slightly smaller proportion of coronavirus infections and deaths compared to men.

In all, around 41 percent of reported COVID-19 cases were women, although the figures ranged widely from 31 percent in Niger to over 57 percent in South Africa.

“In most countries, women are somewhat less likely to die from Covid-19 than men,” World Health Organization (WHO) regional director for Africa Matshidiso Moeti told an online news conference.

However, the pandemic had exposed gaps in health service, and that women suffering the brunt of disrupted access to care.

Moeti added that, “There was a rise in maternal deaths in 10 countries,” while making reference to another study that collated data between February and July 2020.

Comoros, Mali, Senega and South Africa recorded the highest jumps.

READ ALSO: COVID-19: Africa Making Progress On Vaccine Coverage – WHO

There was already poor access to sexual and reproductive care on the continent before the hit by coronavirus.

But Moeti explained that access was made worse by restrictions to stem the spread of Covid-19, this made more women to seek risky informal abortions.

She added that overstretched hospitals were often unable to see patients seeking non-coronavirus related services.

More data are still needed to determine the full extent of the effect.

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