Status: Current response
Status: Current response
August 2021: As Africa battles a new wave of the deadly COVID-19 virus; Botswana has been particularly hard hit. A third of the country’s total cases have been recorded in July, with the number of deaths rising week on week for the past month, accounting for a quarter of the country’s total COVID-19 related deaths.
With only 5% (JHU) of the population having been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, the recent surge has led to a rise in patient hospital admissions, pushing staff and hospital resources to their limits. As a result, the Ministry of Health and Wellness, Botswana (MoHW) issued an urgent call for international assistance to help bring the pandemic under control.
Botswana is a landlocked country in Southern Africa with a population of 2.3 million and (CDC/Botswana) its health system already faces significant challenges managing diseases including HIV, TB and Malaria. (WHO/Botswana). The WHO believes that the spread of the Delta variant, which is more transmissible, has contributed to the sharp increase in coronavirus cases and deaths across Africa, including Botswana.
Led by Kenyan epidemiologist, nurse and public health specialist, Eunice Chege, UK-Med has deployed a team of ten doctors, nurses and operational experts to provide specialist training and on the job support for Batswana medical professionals in two hospitals in Botswana’s capital city, Gaborone, where they are fighting the coronavirus pandemic. The response will last six weeks.
Our international team from the UK, Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda and Nigeria have specialities that include emergency medicine, critical care, infection prevention and control, risk communications and community engagement, public health and logistics.
They will help strengthen the national health care team’s skills in the identification, referral and management of critically ill COVID patients, strengthening healthcare teams and community’s awareness of the virus and supporting ongoing vaccination efforts.
UK-Med Team Lead, Eunice Chege, says:
“Our well-equipped and expert UK Emergency Medical team will support the MOHW Botswana in strengthening efforts to curb this pandemic.
The pandemic control remains our focus and concern as we strive to save lives and control the disease.”
We will update this page as our deployment progresses.
With thanks to the British people via funding from the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO).