The Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) says African institutions have identified over 80 potential clinical sites to test coronavirus treatments.
Africa CDC gave an update on the continent’s response to COVID-19 on Thursday. Africa currently has 644 205 COVID-19 cases with the SADC region accounting for 50% of the confirmed COVID-19 cases in the continent.
The health Agency’s Director, Dr. John Nkengasong, says the whole purpose of the Consortium for COVID-19 Vaccine Clinical Trial (CONCVACT) is meant to engage others.
He says, “The institutions in Africa we have, have already done a review on what clinical sites are available. There are over 80 potential clinical sites, which means they have the ability to enroll participants and follow them carefully, that work has been done already. I think we are trying to move this as quickly as possible and bring the partnerships.”
Nkengasong says if a vaccine was to be available, 7.8 billion people will need it.
“If there is an available vaccine today about 7.8 billion people in the world will be in need of that vaccine, so the manufacturers will need to be decentralised as possible and we are that they are groups on the continent that can manufacture, which is different from producing a vaccine, which means you are doing your own research on it and then producing and finally test it and you make sure it works and then you take it to clinical trials. Any vaccine that is promising any way and shows promise, we can test it on the continent as much as possible.”
Consortium for COVID-19 Vaccine Clinical Trial
Earlier this month, the Africa CDC launched a Consortium for COVID-19 Vaccine Clinical Trial following a virtual conference on Africa’s Leadership Role in COVID-19 Vaccine Development and Access, held in June.
CONCVACT will be co-chaired by Dr Salim Abdool Karim, Head of the Ministerial Advisory Committee for COVID-19 in South Africa; Dr Samba Sow, Director-General for Center for Vaccine Development of Mali; and Dr John Nkengasong, Director of Africa CDC.
Other members of the consortium will include representatives of key organizations supporting clinical trials on the continent, including the World Health Organisation, the Africa Academy of Sciences’ Clinical Trials Community, Institute Pasteur, African Vaccine Regulatory Forum, African Medicines Agency, NEPAD, and others.