Health experts warn that some patients may develop post COVID-19 pneumonia or inflammation of the lungs.
They say they are seeing patients with long-term lung damage as a result of the coronavirus.
However, they are encouraged that a large proportion of the patients do eventually recover – even if it’s many months after being cleared of COVID-19.
Pulmonologist and Professor of Critical Care at Wits University Guy Richards says: “Now those people are the ones who potentially are going to suffer from lung injury or lung damage that may occur thereafter. That means that on healing they develop scarring of the lungs or what we call fibrosis of the lungs and that then can result in long term disability with regards to lung function per se – but that is mainly in the group of people who have received mechanical ventilation because the disease has been that severe.”
UK, WHO and SA to petition UN for universal access to vaccine
Need for COVID-19 vaccines more compelling in developing countries: Mkhize
Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize says the need for equitable access to COVID-19 treatments and vaccines has become more compelling, especially in developing countries.
Mkhize was speaking during a virtual meeting of the UN Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator Facilitation Council (ACT-Accelerator).
The South African Health Minister says the impact of the pandemic has devastated global economies. He says it has also prompted the need for universal health coverage, among other things.
“In the 10 months since we’ve seen the virus breaking out, we’ve seen the following: firstly the sustainable development goals being put at risk, 100-million people around the world facing the possibility of being driven to poverty, global health progress set back. We must therefore confront this health crisis as a global challenge together in solidarity and cooperation with one another working towards a global common solution. We must ensure the achievement of universal health coverage and improve the lives of millions of people globally especially in developing countries.”