Despite only having seven doctors for every 100,000 people, Senegal has been widely praised for its handling of the coronavirus pandemic. This article looks at how the country has managed to keep Covid-19 in check.

“When the first case came, we were very anxious and I was angry because it was an imported case,” says Dr Khardiata Diallo, who co-ordinates the epidemic treatment centre at Fann Hospital in the capital, Dakar.

“We worried that we lacked equipment, for the treatment of coronavirus there were just 12 beds with limited oxygen supplies for the whole country.”

That was in late February when a Frenchman had returned to Dakar from a skiing holiday with a fever, sore throat and headache.

He was Senegal’s first case of Covid-19, the second reported case in sub-Saharan Africa.

Dr Diallo, who was part of the team that treated the country’s single Ebola case during the West African outbreak of 2014 as well as other cholera outbreaks over the last 15 years, knew they needed to act quickly to contain the pandemic.

  • Free 24-hour testing
  • Singing to defeat the virus
  • Muslim pilgrimage challenge

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