Modelling estimates infer almost 1.2 million indirect COVID-19 deaths in developing countries from additional (i) child and maternal deaths, (ii) HIV, (iii) tuberculosis, and (iv) malaria, corresponding to almost 50% of the 2.5 million direct COVID-19 deaths worldwide reported by late February 2021. Furthermore, indirect victims of the pandemic are expected from chronic diseases, cardiovascular problems, cancer, and neurosurgical conditions as well as long-term health consequences from ophthalmic diseases, dental care needs, hookworms, bacterial infections and others. Malnutrition and obesity are also likely to be exacerbated and additional mental health needs to arise in the already overburdened, poorly equipped and underfinanced developing country health systems. Next to identifying the burden of disease that is largely neglected because of COVID-19, this chapter provides exploratory analysis of the economic costs of delayed and foregone health care. This shows that: a) in the worst case, these costs can hamper the already low economic growth in the Sub-Sahara Africa region and b) that developed countries do good in supporting developing countries in their broader health system responses, even if the main objective of the former is to avoid further Coronavirus mutations and their spread across the globe.
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Wagner, N. (2022). Indirect Health Effects Due to COVID-19: An Exploration of Potential Economic Costs for Developing Countries. In: Papyrakis, E. (eds) COVID-19 and International Development. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-82339-9_8
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