The second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic is hitting Somalia hard as the East African nation’s already fragile health system grapples with the spike in daily new infections that some hospital authorities believe is due to the new coronavirus strain
Mahad Mohamed Ibrahim, the son of a person who recently passed away from COVID-19-related complications, wants better for his country.
“Coronavirus has come into the city, we need someone to stop it and give us medicine that gives us immunity. Now you see I am sad today as my mother died and you will see many others whose parents will also die.”
Health workers at the Martini Hospital in Mogadishu, the capital’s only virus isolation centre, have been working tirelessly to save lives resulting in numerous recoveries. However, circulating rumors and rampant anxiety tend to highlight death.
Dr Sadaq Adan Hussein, the Deputy Director of Martini Hospital, shares his concern about the general misinformation within the nation.
“There are some rumors on social media reporting of much higher fatalities for the virus, I think these are politically motivated reasons and it is impossible that we lose 200 people in one night in our hospitals (as is being suggested on social media). The truth is in the past three weeks we have lost about 50 people.”
COVID-19 vaccine doses are expected to begin arriving in Somalia next month, whose total caseload jumped from just under 5,000 to over 6,000 this month alone.