Respiratory infections are common in Ethiopia, Africa’s second most-populous state, with a population of more than 100 million. Research shows they are the third major cause of death each year, after neonatal disorders and diarrheal diseases.

The coronavirus outbreak does not seem to have led to more patients with respiratory infections being admitted to hospitals over the past few weeks.

A doctor in the capital, Addis Ababa, told the BBC that he was looking for signs of unreported Covid-19 cases but he did not detect anything unusual.

There was no increase, for example, in the number of patients with pneumonia, a severe complication caused by the virus.

Similar reports were given by a doctor and a nurse the BBC spoke to in eastern and southern Ethiopia respectively.

In recent days, the number of cases detected daily has risen from single to double digits. This has raised some concern, but the overall number is still low – less than 400.

This is despite the fact that Ethiopia, unlike many other states, has not introduced a lockdown, taking limited measures, such as a ban on sporting events and gatherings of more than four people, to curb the spread of the virus.

Source : CNBC


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