January 29, 2022


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Doctor PEPIN A. M’PANIA, The new hope for redressing Africa


Doctor Pepin M’Pania is a general practitioner in Johannsburg who is involved in medical research, laboratories equipment selling and chronical disease treatment besides his usua practices as a Doctor. His reputation comes with initiatives he takes to support the president of Democratic Republic of Congo, Felix Tshisekedi in setting up new policies to address the pandemic Covid-19. Next year, the DR Congo will chair African Union. There needs to be a strategic policy to tackle the current wave of the pandemic and to minimize the risk of a high infection rate in the continent that many call a second wave.

Dr Pepin is currently working at “Tambo Memorial hospital “ ex BBH= Boksburg Benoni Hospital where he is saving many lives and covid-19 related cases. To understand the work of a Doctor such as his, these are the features that motivates him to stand on the frontline during this pandemic.

Like everywhere in the world, Dr M’Pania believes that every crisis has its heroes, every disaster its displays of selflessness and sacrifice. Firefighters race into burning buildings. Police officers place themselves in the line of fire. Soldiers march into war. And now, amid the coronavirus pandemic, our health-care workers, doctors, nurses, EMTs and support staff who risk becoming infected themselves. These staffs risk infecting their own families as well. Medical practitioners are making extraordinary sacrifices to care for the rest of us. They do so, most infuriatingly, even as they have been put at greater risk than necessary by the avoidable shortages of masks, face shields and other personal protective equipment. As are, most of all, the deaths, beginning with Dr. Li Wenliang, a Wuhan, China, ophthalmologist who warned his medical school classmates about this strange new virus and was reprimanded by Chinese authorities, only to later contract the virus himself and die. Now, Li’s counterparts in overcrowded and under-resourced hospitals around the world have given their own lives to save others.

Dr M’Pania looks at European countries experience. In Italy, more than 40 health-care workers have died. In France, at least three doctors. In the United States, the toll is beginning to mount. In South Africa, the Government has revised the list of high risk countries based on a risk categorization model. He continue to remind people that the Covid-19 pandemic is still with us and we need to continue to take precautions. In its last meeting, the Cabinet instructed the Ministers of Health, Home Affairs and Tourism to lead a process to review the list. The review of the list of high risk countries was done in such a way that it strikes a balance between saving lives and protecting livelihoods.

Nothing has changed as far as all travellers from the continent of Africa are concerned. They are still welcome to visit the country subject to Covid-19 protocols. The health minister also warned of exhaustion and fatigue among the country’s frontline health workers. “A possible resurgence could be made worse by the two factors above,” he said. “A delay in obtaining an effective (Covid-19) vaccine also keeps us vulnerable.” South Africa reported 1,372 new Covid-19 cases on Sunday (8 November), taking the total reported cases to 737,278. Deaths have reached 19,809, a daily increase of 20, while recoveries climbed to 679,688, leaving the country with a balance of 37,781 active cases.

However, Dr M’Pania points that in Africa, the continent, which has a population of more than one billion, has had about 1.5 million cases, according to data compiled by the John Hopkins University. These figures are far lower than those in Europe, Asia or the Americas, with reported cases continuing to decline. Africa has recorded about 37,000 deaths, compared with roughly 580,000 in the Americas, 230,000 in Europe, and 205,000 in Asia. “The case-fatality ratio (CFR) for Covid-19 in Africa is lower than the global CFR, suggesting the outcomes have been less severe among African populations,” noted a recent continental study by Partnership for Evidence-based Response to Covid-19 (PERC), which brings together a number of private and public organisations. Low testing rates continue to undermine the continental response however, there is no indication that a large number of Covid-19 deaths have been missed, said Dr John Nkengasong, the head of Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC).

On his advisory idea to President Tshisekedi, Dr M’Pania looks at the surge around the world. Meanwhile, hospitals in many Iranian provinces are running out of capacity to handle Covid-19 cases, health authorities say, with novel coronavirus now killing around 300 people a day or one person every five minutes. European leaders warned of a bleak winter as resurgent Covid-19 infections forced countries to impose new restrictions to try to curb a second wave of the pandemic, with the US and France setting new daily records for cases. Australia’s second-biggest city will this week exit its coronavirus lockdown following nearly four months under onerous restrictions, authorities announced Monday, after no new daily cases or deaths were recorded.

Covid-19 infections rose by 17 440 over the weekend, Swiss health authorities showed on Monday, as the government considers tightening restrictions meant to slow the accelerating spread of Covid-19. Italy will present a package of measures on Tuesday to support businesses hit by new restrictions aimed at reining in a second wave of Covid-19, officials said, at a time of mounting protests against the curbs across the country. Russia’s daily tally of new Covid-19 cases soared to a record high of 17 347 on Monday as the Kremlin warned the pandemic was beginning to inflict a greater toll outside Moscow.

In the hope that Africa Union will be the leading organisation to fight Covid while waiting for an affordable and reliable vaccine, Dr M’Pania focuses on preventive measures. He will use his expertise in medical domaine to advise President Tshisekedi.