Table 2

Factors associated with COVID-19 infection, severity and related death in Africa

OutcomeThemePotential specific factors
InfectionDemographic factorsHigh number of people aged ≥65 years25 and high population density.21 25
Health system level factorsLow number of physicians and hospitals22 and low BCG vaccination.24
Politico-economic factorsHigh economic openness, strong political democracy,23 more imports of goods and services, wide international tourism, high international travel24 and city connectivity.20
Environmental factorLow mean temperature.23 25
Comorbid conditionsLow malaria infection rate,9 25 28 high HIV infection rate and under-5 diarrhoeal disease.9
SeverityDemographic factorsHigh percentage of older age population profile.7 19
Comorbid conditionsPeople with HIV, TB and anaemia.19 21
DeathHealth system policy factorsLow prevention, detection, response and risk environment indices.27
Politico-economic factorsMore imports of goods and services, wide international tourism,24 low global health security index score27 and low health expenditure (percentage of GDP).26
Chronic illness and lifestyle factorsHigh prevalence of chronic illness and tobacco use.8
  • COPD, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; GDP, gross domestic product; TB, tuberculosis.