Speaking as part of the fourth monthly update on the coronavirus situation in Senegal, the Director of the Centre for Health Emergency Operations (COUS) Dr Abdoulaye Bousso insisted on the care of the elderly or people with comorbidities. Thus, “we must focus on these people and try to reduce this mortality to be able to control this epidemic and its negative consequences,” he noted.
Four months after the country reported a first case of COVID-19, 7054 people were infected, 4599 recovered and 121 deaths as 2333 patient are still under treatment. This epidemiological evolution is considered important by the health authorities, complaining at the same time as many observers about the non-respect of barrier gestures by the population.
The disease is on longer feared in many districts of the Senegalese capital. People barely wear masks. In public transportations, law enforcement officials monitor the effectiveness of this recommendation, at the risk of getting the passenger out of the car. However, in many places where the public is welcome, barrier gestures are difficult to enforce.
Meanwhile, three days ago President Macky Sall lifted the state of health emergency and related curfew to allow the economy to recover. He called for people to wear masks and “properly.”
President Sall also announced the reopening of air borders from July 15. But at this level, Pr. Bousso explained that the strategy chosen is to test all passengers even if he is convinced that it will be difficult to do so systematically given the flows coming down to the airport.
In addition, Dr Bousso announced that asymptomatic people will no longer be tested and that the “home care” of some patients will be reinforced. The objective is to relieve congestion in the care structures and to rationalize at the financial level, estimating that “more than 200 people” have been cured at home between Dakar and Diourbel (center).
“Some people meet the conditions to be cared for at home. There is an important fact that pushes us to go there because we have cases of refusal,” he justified.
“With the increase in stigmatization, there have been cases of refusal and we have more than 200 people who refuse to go to the treatment centres. We can’t abandon these people. We have to take care of them. And it is within this framework that this strategy will be developed and strengthened,” he noted.
“We have a better control, a better knowledge of how the disease is transmitted and we know that a person can be tested positive and live with their family by respecting barrier gestures,” Dr Bousso added.