2017 Tutu Fellow Yap Boum II has written a post titled Coronavirus: Amid the global pandemic, lessons for Africa which was published by the Brookings Institution on 20 March 2020.  Yap, who is a microbiologist and epidemiologist and the regional representative for Epicenter Africa, the research arm of Doctors Without Borders, started the article by saying that the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic is unprecedented in modern times, bringing enormous human, social, and economic disruption. It's been a busy time for Yap, with the Coronavirus pandemic following the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where he was on the frontline in a Phase III trial ebola vaccine to reduce the numbers of people infected by the disease.

In the article, Yap says that for Africa, where most countries have relatively weak health systems, the relatively slow arrival of COVID-19 bought Africa time to prepare.

Working with the World Health Organisation and the Africa Centers for Disease Control, national governments have been mobilising precautionary measures.  He said that since most African countries were within the containment phase of the epidemic curve, time was of the essence, and urgent action to prevent an epidemic had to be the overriding objective.

He listed four early lessons to heed in responding to the ongoing outbreak:

The full article, which Yap co-authored with Yvonne Mburu, can be read at the Brooking Institution website.