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WHO launches Covid network for SADC

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has launched a new network called CoViNet, which seeks to facilitate and coordinate global expertise for early detection and monitoring of the coronavirus in countries within the Southern African Development Community (SADC).

Doctor Maria Van Kershove, the acting Director of WHO’s Department of Epidemic and Pandemic Preparedness and Prevention, said that the data generated through CoViNet’s efforts will guide the work of WHO’s technical and vaccine composition team in ensuring that regional health policies and tools are based on the latest scientific information.

In a statement, Van Kershove highlighted that laboratories will be established in SADC countries, specifically at the National Institute for Communicable Diseases in South Africa.

“These laboratories will be responsible for developing coronavirus vaccines for the entire region,” She said.

Earlier, the Director General of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, Doctor Jean Kaseya, described the move as a game changer towards achieving vaccine self-reliance.

Recently, the African Union set a goal for the continent to produce 60% of the vaccines needed by 2040.

By Alufisha Fischer

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