The World Health Organization (WHO) said Africa could become the next epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak.

According to BBC, this development has come after there was a sharp rise in cases in the past week.

Considering the cases recorded in the continent (almost 1,000 deaths and more than 18,000 infections) even although the rates are far lower than those seen in parts of Europe and the US.

On the severity of the spread so far, the renowned organisation, WHO has confirmed that the virus appears to be spreading away from African capitals.

On preventive measures, it has also highlighted that the continent does not have enough ventilators to deal with a pandemic.

Speaking to BBC, the organisation’s Africa director, Dr Matshidiso Moeti, said, the WHO had witnessed the virus spreading from capital cities to “the hinterland” in South Africa, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Cameroon and Ghana.

After discovering that African countries don’t have the capacity to treat many coronavirus patients, she said they were focusing on prevention rather than treating the virus.

Speaking further, she said, “We want to minimise the proportion of people who get to the point of needing critical care in an ICU, because we know that these types of facilities are not adequate by any means in the majority of African countries,”

“I have to say the issue of ventilators is one of the biggest challenges that the countries are facing.”

For patients critically ill with Covid-19, access to a ventilator could be a matter of life or death.