There’s no escaping the fact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had a huge impact on the world. However, developing countries have taken the biggest hit since they’re unable to properly social distance, they don’t have access to handwashing facilities, and they’re not fit enough to fight off illnesses without medical assistance. Despite this, medical assistance is hardly available due to a lack of medical infrastructure and healthcare professionals.
COVID-19 has been responsible for millions of deaths worldwide, but the development of the vaccine has brought hope. Though the vaccine is in full circulation across the developed world, it’s not as readily distributed across developing nations. This means that preventative measures aren’t put in place to shield people from the virus, making it more contagious than ever. Viruses such as these are rifer in colder temperatures, meaning that the situation is only set to get worse as we approach the winter months. Therefore, multiple charities set up winter emergency appeals to aid nations in need during the cold season.
As far as we’re able to see, the Coronavirus has hit Latin America the hardest due to all manner of reasons. These include the number of internal migrants, inadequate public medical services, the number of workers in the informal sector, the heavy population of cities, and inequality throughout the region. In addition to these factors, Latin America is less experienced in dealing with pandemics, as opposed to Africa or East Asia. These continents had to handle both the Ebola and SARS epidemics, wherein social distancing and other measures were readily implemented.
As a result, Brazil has the second highest number of cases and deaths worldwide after the US. This likely comes down to the political leadership since the US was adamant to carry on as normal regardless of the severity of the situation. The likes of Brazil and Mexico followed suit, meaning that the virus was allowed to spread until it was too late.
In spite of figures, it’s hard to determine how sub-Saharan Africa has been affected by the Pandemic. It could be that the youthful population is responsible for the low level of cases and deaths. However, it could also be due to inadequate and inaccessible testing systems that don’t properly display the severity of the situation.
It’s thought that COVID hotspots begin in predominant metropolises with bustling international airports. These include New York, London, and Milan, which are widely regarded as hugely developed cities. Despite this, it may be that the impact is more easily measured in developed countries, but this doesn’t lessen the effect on developing countries is less of a concern. In fact, the situation is more worrying in developing countries since they don’t have the medical facilities to accommodate the issue.
Not only has the pandemic shook the medical sector of developing countries, but it has also devastated their economic situations. Continuous lockdowns have resulted in an all time high in unemployment figures, whilst the tourism sector has come to a complete standstill.
Unlike developed countries such as the US and UK, developing countries are unable to respond to the pandemic with huge government spending. Their budget barely covers the countries’ requirements in a normal year, let alone when the whole world has been stunted. Similarly, many developing countries rely on importation and exportation for their income and goods, and this was stripped of them in wake of the pandemic. Before the pandemic, countries such as Venezuela, Nigeria, Lebanon, Ecuador, and Argentina were already in serious debt, which only worsened by the Coronavirus situation.
Coronavirus is not likely to disappear any time soon; keep the developing world in your thoughts.