The World Bank has launched a study that reveals that healthcare workers in low to middle income countries like South Africa were the most affected economically and socially by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The study looked at five countries including Kenya, Columbia and South Africa with case studies on responses, impact and comprehensive framework of the direct cost of the pandemic looking at infections and deaths.
It found the economic cost to healthcare workers in KwaZulu-Natal and the Western Cape to be at over R600 million attributed to medical treatments and productivity losses, among others.
Senior economist at the World Bank Huihui Wang explains the findings.
“It really has a significant cost. We presented the cost to poor infected healthcare workers; it ranges from ten thousand in Columbia to about 35 thousand in Eswatini so around the five sides it’s about 35 thousand dollars and if you compare to per capita GDP you can see that the ratio is substantial and in Kenya it is as much as eighteen times higher.”