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Community-Level Health Interventions are Crucial in the Post-COVID-19 Era: Lessons from Africa’s Proactive Public Health Policy Interventions

Frederick Ahen ()
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Frederick Ahen: University of Eastern Finland

Humanistic Management Journal, 2022, vol. 7, issue 3, No 1, 369-390

Abstract: Abstract Measured against the gloomy pre-COVID-19 predictions, Africa has fared far better than most regions in managing the pandemic. This much, however, has received less attention. This paper answers the question: how have the new rituals of self determination in public health affected the successful management of COVID-19 in Africa, and how can the continent and the rest of the world build on such models/lessons in the post-pandemic era? I employ emancipatory theorising in reviewing literature on approaches to governance of COVID-19. The rationale is to empower the grassroots and to accentuate the urgency for a decolonized local ownership of the governance of all public health crises. I argue that while traditional international cooperation is necessary for additional resource and expertise from the global North for sustainable health, the political will of Southern governments remains fundamental for any extraordinary success due to its grassroots/community orientation towards non-pharmaceutical interventions and initial pre-emptive rituals. The novelty in this paper is that it lays bare the ignored African responses and lessons and reveals how to harness protective communitarian ethos in solving future crises. The paper further provides population health as an ‘immune system’ policy framework for explaining and predicting how a scientific and human-centrered grassroots leadership can yield optimal outcomes in any future crisis.

Keywords: Africa; COVID-19; Political will; Pre-emptive interventions; Public health inequality; Vaccine nationalism (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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DOI: 10.1007/s41463-022-00127-3

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